As believers in Christ, God always wants to take us somewhere. He wants to stretch us, move us out of comfort and into the calling He has placed on our lives. But we struggle and fight it because it’s unknown and unfamiliar and sometimes we’d rather just stay where we are and tread water and float in our complacency. But God has more in store for us, and in the clip from the sermon Blessed and Broken, Pastor Steven teaches us that no matter how uncertain we are about the destination, if God is taking us, we’re in the right hands.
Archive for the ‘Sermon Clips’ Category
We have all been there. Stuck in the midst of chaos. The bad days. When it feels like we’re losing the fight. When all hope seems lost and victory seems furthest away. We cry out for God to rescue us from our struggle and fast forward our lives to a better day in the future. But in this clip from our series Living a Better Story, Pastor Steven explains one of the reasons we struggle, and the greater purpose found within our conflicts.
We roll up our sleeves, put our best foot forward, and try to achieve our goals and dreams through our own effort. We make promises and commitments. We set up rules and regulations. But no matter how hard we try, we still fall short. We end up disappointed. We never find true success and fulfillment. We fall short of the expectations God designed for His creation. But there is another way. A way to freedom, hope, and reconciliation. In this clip from our series Greater, Pastor Steven uses the story of the prophet Elisha to show how our lives can be fulfilled in one perfect way.
Disappointment. Betrayal. Brokenness. Our dependance on others often guarantees that they will one day hurt us. In our lives we will unfortunately experience the pain of burned bridges and unmet expectations. But maybe it’s because we want something out of our relationships that God never intended for us to find there. In this clip from the sermon Frustrations of Fixer, Pastor Steven explains the reason why our relationships fail and how to fix them by recalibrating our source for affirmation.
God, look what they did to me. God, are you going to let them treat me that way? We have a tendency to let God know when we’ve been wronged, like it’s up to us to help Him keep up with everyone else. In this clip from our series Mr. & Mrs. Betterhalf, Pastor Steven’s wife, Holly teaches us what God has commanded us to do when things aren’t going our way.
You can keep up with Holly and read her unique perspective on being a wife and mother in the ministry though her blog.
In our struggles and trials, we often begin questioning our purpose. Why can’t I get it together? What’s wrong with me? Did God make a mistake with my life? We start second-guessing our value and worth. But in Christ, there is a truth to cling to in these moments of self-doubt. In this clip from our sermon ‘Fearfully & Wonderfully Made’ Pastor Steven reminds us of just how God designed each of our lives.
When we are trying to understand the will of God, we often want Him to give us a black and white answer. We want the yes or no. We don’t want any grey area. But in this clip from our series Grey Matter, Pastor Steven teaches us that we have created a double standard when it comes to the hidden will of God and His revealed commands to us.
We live in a world of constant feedback. Whether we ask for it or not, we’re always being told what we need to change, who we need to be, and what our goals and desires should be. And it can be hard to discern the truth through this myriad of voices. Who should we listen to? Who’s approval should we want? But in this clip from our Student Takeover event, Pastor Steven encourages us to remember that as believers in Christ, we are already approved by the only opinion that matters.
All too often, when it comes to a decision in our lives, we think God is trying to pull a fast one on us. We are looking for the trap door or the hidden camera. What if I choose this job and I end up hating it? What if the other college was where I was supposed to meet my husband? But we forget that God isn’t trying to trick us. In this clip from our series God’s Will Is Whatever Pastor Steven uses Bean Boozled jelly beans to illustrate this common misconception we have about God and His will for our lives.
Wealth. Love. Acceptance. Success. These are the typical responses that come to mind when we think of what gives us joy. But at the same time, when we let our joy be determined by these parts of lives, we also give them the power to steal our joy. In this clip from our series The Joy Genome, Pastor Steven teaches a powerful truth about the source we should access for our joy.
We want to directions. We want the next steps. We want to know where God wants us to go. But for many of us, God simply wants us to follow the last instructions He gave us, before giving us something else to do. In this clip from our series Grey Matter, Pastor Steven explains that when we want our lives to align with the will of God, there is only one decision we can make that will truly matter.
The foundation for all we believe as Christians is built solely on who Jesus is. It’s not a list of do’s and don’ts. It’s not trying harder to be a better person. It’s not simply believing in a supernatural power bigger than ourselves. It’s Jesus and only Jesus. And in this clip from our series I Know He Is But What Am I? Pastor Steven reiterates just who Jesus is to all who believe in His name.
We’ve all thought how much better life would be if God would just give us a plan to follow. Some instructions for the life He designed for us. The right wife, the right job, the good choices, the best life. But where would that actually leave us? In this clip from our series, Treatment, Pastor Steven explains how knowing the entire plan would get in the way of the real purpose for of our lives.
We’re all afraid of something. For some, it’s physical fears – spiders, snakes, heights. For others though, the fears are deeper and more internal – the fear of not being accepted, not having control, not know the future. No matter the fear, they can paralyze us from moving forward in the life God has planned for us. And in this clip from our series Room 101, Pastor Steven teaches us that the best way we can overcome fear is by feeding our faith.
It didn’t work. Our efforts went unnoticed. Our prayers fell short. Through the up’s and down’s of our lives, we will all hear this thought creep into our subconscious – “You don’t matter.” And on the surface it may appear that way. We shared our faith, but our friend didn’t accept Christ. We prayed for our children, but they seem to be moving further from God. But don’t lose heart. In this clip from The Most Encouraging Sermon You Never Heard, Pastor Steven reminds us that our faith, our efforts, and our prayer matter far more than we may ever know.
No matter how hard we try. No matter how much effort we put forth. No matter how determined we are – there is a clear limit to what we can accomplish by ourselves. We will fail, fall, and exhaust ourselves with our own efforts. But as Christians we have access to more. There is a power apart from our own strength that exists, if we’d only recognize it and take hold. In this clip from our series Grapes & Giants, Pastor Steven helps us understand what we leave on the table when we choose not to appropriate the power found in Christ.
If we don’t have a relationship with Jesus, we fall into one of two camps. Perhaps we’re on the side that believes that we don’t need Jesus; that we’re good enough and our lives are just fine without Him. Or maybe we’re on the other side that sees ourselves as condemned, too far gone to be worthy of the salvation Jesus offers. But in this clip from Seven Mile Miracle, Pastor Steven teaches us that no matter which side we fall under, there is only one thing keeping us from the forgiveness found in Jesus.
We’ve blown it. Big time. We wasted one too many chances. We’ve burned too many bridges. We’ve hurt too many people and there’s no turning back. These are the thoughts that echo in our heads over and over again when we look how far our lives are from God. But there is Good News. In this clip from 3D Easter, Pastor Steven shows us just how far Jesus will go to bring us back.
You find resources from 3D Easter and other past Elevation Easter series at Resources.ElevationChurch.org.
It’s hard to change. Even after we accept Christ, many of us have a difficult time changing the patterns and habits we followed before we knew Jesus. But at it’s root, this struggle has less to do with our actions and more to do with our thought processes. In this clip from our series Christ Alone, Pastor Steven teaches us the difference between our human nature without Christ and the nature of a mind controlled by the Holy Spirit.
We all have found ourselves looking at the lives of other Christians, wondering how they got their act together and how they’re able to live a holier life than us. So here’s the secret to living the perfect Christian life – there is no secret. We’re all in the same boat. Sinful and broken, but redeemed by the blood of Jesus. And in this clip from our series Treatment Pastor Steven reminds us that God sees us as that, in spite of how we see ourselves.
Repentance. From an outsider’s perspective, it sounds about as desirable as a root canal. Repentance feels like we’re getting ready to embarrassingly air our dirty laundry in front of God and everybody. But for believers in Christ who understand it’s purpose, repentance has the ability to restore our souls and fill our lives with a satisfying joy only found in the presence of the Father. In this clip from our series Storytellers, Pastor Steven reframes our perspective on the purpose found in repentance.
How do we respond in dire circumstances? When we’re backed into a corner and our situation is bleak? We can’t wait until the worst happens to choose a response. We have to make a pre-decision.
In this clip from our series Grey Matter, Pastor Steven shows through the life of Daniel how to pre-decide our reaction in our darkest situations based on the character of God.
When reading the Old Testament, it’s hard for us to not be scared to death of God. Flood. Plagues. Fire. Wrath. We start seeing God as a big bully with a bad temper. And we tiptoe around trying to do everything right so He doesn’t strike us dead with a lightning bolt. But does God really want us to be scared of Him? And how do we reconcile that with His love, hope, and grace we read about in the New Testament? In this clip from our series Room 101, Pastor Steven helps us understand by teaching the difference between being scared of God and having the fear of the Lord.
It happens every time. When we get hurt by someone, our immediate and automatic defense is always resentment, revenge, and holding on to our pain. But what are we trying to prove? And how much more damage are we doing to ourselves through the offenses of others? There has got to be a better technique. In this clip from our series F-Bomb, Pastor Steven teaches us a new way, found in freedom of forgiveness.
Following Christ is so much more than God giving us what we want when we want it; treating Him like some sort of absentee father with spoiled children. But as Paul writes in Philippians 2, God wants to work in our hearts, to purify our desires and to drive our actions. And in this clip from our series, The Joy Genome, Pastor Steven shows us what Psalm 37 really means when it says the Lord will give us the desires of our heart.
We have all lost things in our lives that seem unrecoverable. Not the small stuff like your keys or that other sock. Big things. Like hope. Faith. Love. Trust. Integrity. What are we supposed to do in the situations when we think we’ve lost it all? How can we recover? In this clip from our series Get Back, Pastor Steven explains to us that God knows what we lost – and He has a recovery plan.
As crazy as it sounds, there’s a chance you don’t want the favor of God on your life. And it’s because we don’t understand what the favor of God looks like. Having God’s favor does not mean our lives are easier or more convenient. That’s not the point of it. In this clip from our series Found Favor, Pastor Steven teaches us what it really means to have the favor of God – and why it’s better than any life we could imagine.
Often we struggle understanding were we fit into God’s plan. What part of the story are we? What lines do we have and what is our motivation? What do we do when the spotlight is on us? In this clip from our series Living A Better Story, Pastor Steven explains how the role God designed for us to play is often different than what we thought.
What would it look like if everyday we spoke life, love, and potential over our relationships? How would that change the prayers, interactions, and frustrations we have with the ones we love? In this clip from our series Mr. & Mrs. Betterhalf, Pastor Steven shows us what happens when we speak life over our relationships.
Sorry. But there is really no nicer way to say it. Your excuses are stupid. Especially when it comes to your relationship with Christ. Yes, you may have had a rough childhood. Yes, you may have a busy schedule. Yes, you may think you’re giving up too many opportunities and experiences. But in this clip from our series The Invitation, Pastor Steven reminds us of what we really give up when we offer up our excuses to Christ.
We are all wired for frustration. It’s our natural reaction when our experiences fail to meet our expectations. But there’s another way. In this clip from our series How to Hug a Vampire, Pastor Steven teaches us how to change our response in the face of frustration.
God’s will. We are constantly wondering and praying about what God’s will is for our lives. Who are we supposed to marry? Where are we supposed to work? What are we supposed to do? But before we asking these questions, we first need to ask ourselves about our own identity. In this clip from our series Grapes and Giants, Pastor Steven teaches us how knowing our identity influences our activity.
Calling. It’s a vague word and it looks different for all of us – but we all want it. What is God’s purpose for us? What does He want us to do with the time we’ve been given? But many of us have the wrong idea about our calling. Our calling is not some distant future dream we’ll chase and champion when our situation allows it. It’s not what we would do, it’s what we can do. In the final part of our New Rules of Resolution series, Pastor Steven shows us how to walk in the calling God has planned for us – while tearing down some preconceived notions that can limit our impact and role in God’s will.
You can sugarcoat it all you want, but we are living in a fallen world that is hurting and dying without the life-saving message of Jesus. And not just in remote villages on the other side of the world. In your city. In your office. In your home. And as Christians, we are commanded in scripture to show Jesus to our world. In this clip from our series One Generation Away, Pastor Steven reminds us of this responsibility we have been given by Christ.
We all have dreams. Callings. Passions. The things that burn in our heart and keep us up at night. The people and places God has laid a burden on our heart for. But our calling doesn’t come easy. There will be doubts, fears, and naysayers. Voices telling us to give up faith and throw in the towel. But in the clip from our series Sun Stand Still, Pastor Steven teaches us the importance of selective hearing in the fight for our faith.
Who has the better job. Who has the better kids. Whose recipe is better on Pinterest and whose sunset looks better on Instagram. It’s all around us. We are slaves to a constant and endless cycle of comparison. But why? What are we trying to prove? And to who? And ultimately, for what? In the fourth part of our series The New Rules of Resolution, Pastor Steven addresses the harmful effects our culture of competition, and the only way to truly break free from it.
Revenge. It’s our first reaction when there has been injustice done against us or the people we love. How could they do that? What are we going to do to get even? Even as Christians, we still want so badly for the wrongs to be righted and the whole story told. But God has another way. In this clip from our series Storytellers, Pastor Steven explains why so many of us struggle with setting our offenders free, and what only God can do to help.
There are many places our hearts will drift to if we allow it. Places we don’t want our heart to go. Worry. Fear. Pride. Selfishness. Because our natural tendency is to dwell on the things of this earth. But in this clip from our series Killswitch, Pastor Steven reminds us that when we accept Christ as our Savior, we can program our hearts and minds in a new way found only in Him.
A crucial part of our growing relationship with God is our knowledge of His character. But as we continue to learn who God is, we have to be careful that we don’t minimize God by putting our own finite limitations on Him. Our God is too great to fit into a box that always satisfies our understanding. God’s ways are higher than our limited reasoning. In this clip from our series Grey Matter, Pastor Steven helps us remove some of the dichotomies that keep us from developing a deeper trust in God.
When someone we love goes through a difficult season, it can be hard to know what to do or how to respond. Should we try to fix the situation? Should we just listen and support? Do we join them in their anger or sadness, or should we stay positive and encourage them through their pain? In this clip from Pastor Steven’s sermon “Frustrations of A Fixer,” he explains the role God plays in our relationships, and why that should affect the way we help others through uncertain circumstances.
In the world’s economy, we are taught that you first achieve, then receive. You don’t get your yearly bonus in January. You don’t get your college degree before you take the classes. You have to do the work before you get the reward. This model is true in all areas of our lives. Except one. Because God’s economy works in a different way. In the second part of our series The New Rules of Resolution, Pastor Steven explains the life-changing implications of God’s exception to the rule.
“We’re not good enough.” “We’ve screwed up too much.” “We’re nothing more than a forgotten afterthought in God’s plan.” These are the lies Satan whispers to us throughout our lives. But if we’ve accepted Jesus, nothing could be further from the truth. We are forgiven, loved, and highly valued. In this clip from the Code Orange Revival, Pastor Steven teaches us that even though the world may have counted us out, the love of Christ has sent for us – and He’s got big plans for our lives.
We kicked off 2012 with the 12-night Code Orange Revival, celebrating God’s faithfulness and praying for Him to move greatly on our behalf in the coming year. We heard from some of the world’s greatest preachers and communicators like Pastor Craig Groeschel, Pastor James Macdonald, and Bishop TD Jakes. Subscribe to the Elevation Church Podcast to download all 12 nights for free.
As the new year begins, many of us are praying and asking God to move in big ways in our lives. We want to see Him take over our homes, our schools, and our cities. We want the Gospel of Jesus to fill the hearts of our friends and families. But how important is it to us? What are we willing to do to see God move? In this clip from the Code Orange Revival, Pastor Steven explains the important role our obedience plays in the activity of God.
We kicked off 2012 with the 12-night Code Orange Revival, celebrating God’s faithfulness and praying for Him to move greatly on our behalf in the coming year. We heard from some of the world’s greatest preachers and communicators like Pastor Craig Groeschel, Pastor James Macdonald, and Bishop TD Jakes. Subscribe to the Elevation Church Podcast to download all 12 nights for free.
One of the most discouraging times every year is the moment you realize that you didn’t keep some, if not all, of your new year’s resolutions. What’s wrong with us? Maybe we are too weak and undisciplined. Maybe we’re making the wrong goals. Or maybe we’re just going about it all the wrong way. In the first part of our series, The New Rules of Resolution, Pastor Steven explains to us why God is more interested in our process than our projects.
When we do something for someone, what is our motive? Is it because we truly want to honor them? Or is it because we’re keeping a secret tally sheet hanging future favors and kudos over their head? And how can you tell when you’re honoring for the right reasons? In this clip from our series Honorology, Pastor Steven helps us check the true motives of our hearts when we show honor to others.
As we begin to make our lists, priorities, and resolutions for 2013, here’s a strange suggestion – don’t put Jesus first this year. Seriously. Don’t. Now before crying ‘heresy!’ and picking up some stones to throw, check out this clip from Pastor Steven, as he explains why putting Jesus first limits His influence in the other areas of our lives.
The birth of Christ was unlike anything else in the history of human existence. It’s not over-dramatic or exaggerated to say that it literally split time. Our world is forever separated by the time before Christ’s birth (BC), and the years following (anno domini – AD). And when the the Magi saw the star stop over Bethlehem, it announced to the world that the Savior had arrived. A dividing line in history. For our Timeless Christmas worship experience, Pastor Steven preached about the dividing lines in our lives – when everything changed forever.
Today is Christmas. A day when all Christians should celebrate, praise God, and thank Him for His love. Because on this day, in a dirty barn in a small town, our Savior was born. Jesus. Immanuel. God with us. A birth that forever changed the course of human history. And as Pastor Steven reminds us in this clip from ‘Code Orange Christmas‘ God wasn’t just with us on that day over 2,000 years ago – He is still very much with us today.
The Christian life is not the easy road. Jesus is very clear that a life rooted in Him will not be void of trials, pains, and disappointments. In John, He even goes as far as to assure us that in this world, we will have trouble. But even in the most difficult seasons, God reminds us of who He still is in the midst of our situation. In this clip from our sermon series I Won’t Survive The Holidays, Pastor Steven teaches how to approach our circumstances with a ‘nevertheless’ perspective on the trials of our lives.
The tragic events that recently took place in Newtown, CT, have shaken our collective consciousness and broken the hearts of our nation. We live in a dark, sinful world. But in the face of evil, we know God’s promises and Jesus’ commands. We may never fully understand why things like this happen, but we do know what our response should be. In the final installment of our Banner Years series, before our church celebrated the power of Christ in our lives through worship, baptisms, and giving to the expansion of God’s work through our church, Pastor Steven gave us a strong reminder of the Church’s role in the face of great tragedy.
As Christians, we are called to live like Jesus in every aspect of our lives. But one of the most difficult areas to follow Christ in is our generosity. But why? Why is it so hard for us to live a generous life? And what are we missing out on when we choose to not live generously? In this clip from our series e Pastor Steven explains why generosity is our greatest power as believers.
Many of us fall into the trap of believing that we have something of value we can give God. Our money. Our time. Our life. These are all great in and of themselves – but how can we really give God something that He gave to us in the first place? In this clip from our series “The Highest,” Pastor Steven explains the one gift we actually can offer to God – and why it matters the most.
Every week in churches around the world, the message of God’s love is preached as people hear of a hope for this life found only in Christ. That is the mission. That is why we are here. But what happens when God’s truths intersects real life? How well does our faith in Christ hold up in the face of real tragedy?
For part six of our Banner Years series, we heard the powerful testimony of the Laymon family. Their story of unshakeable faith in the midst of pain and loss inspired our church and reminded us all of the real reason the Church exists.
You should be proud to be a part of your church. You should be proud of your pastors, volunteers, and worship leaders. You should love the outreach your church does in your city and the work it does to reach people for Jesus. But as churches and leaders, we have to make sure our pride is coming from the right place. In this clip from the Follow series, Pastor Steven teaches us why and how to fearlessly boast in the Lord.
How do we respond when the people in our lives hurt us? When our family doesn’t come through, our friends don’t listen, or our coworkers are condescending? Do we get offended or take the offensive? In this clip from our sermon series The Highest, Pastor Steven teaches us from the life of Christ, the right response to the pain and hurt in our lives.
No matter who you are or where you’re from, we have at least one thing in common: we were born naked and we will die empty handed. That’s a harsh truth for many of us to swallow. Especially when we begin to accumulate successes or wealth or accolades. It becomes much harder for us to recognize God in the equation of our accomplishments during a banner year. And we start keeping score of the wrong game. We lose perspective on what really belongs to us. In part five of our Banner Years series, Pastor Steven teaches us that no matter how well we succeed or how great we become, it’s all meaningless without the right perspective on our priorities and purpose.
Jesus did not call us to a passive faith. He never told us that following Him was a short cut to an easier life. The truth is that real faith in Christ requires plenty of bumps, bruises, and elbow grease. Faith is active and those God used most throughout scripture were those willing to work through their faith, making room for Him to move. In this clip from our series Get Back, Pastor Steven explains how to begin activating your faith.
Who do I marry? Where should I go to college? When am I going to find a new job? Now matter how well we think we’ve planned our lives, there will inevitably be times when the path isn’t easy. When the next step is uncertain. Times when it’s hard to even understand the directions. But as followers of Jesus, we have hope. In this video we created for our series Grey Matter, we are reminded that God has a great plan for our lives – no matter how lost we may feel.
Waiting to hear from God can be one of the hardest things you’ll encounter in your Christian life. Your prayers aren’t being answered. A decision you need guidance on isn’t made any clearer. So we wait. And when we wait, we start asking questions. ‘What did I do wrong?’ ‘What do I need to do right so God will get back to me?’ In this clip from our series ‘Waiting Room‘ Pastor Steven explains that God has a reason for our waiting.
As Christians, God has called us to tithe back to the local church. It’s a scriptural, foundational principle found throughout the Bible. So why are giving and generosity such uncomfortable subjects for many of us to hear sermons about? It’s not because we think the church is asking for our money – it’s about the misplaced priorities of our heart. In this clip from our series The Invitation, Pastor Steven describes to us the right and wrong ways to give to God.
For the third and fourth parts of our Banner Years series, we had the privilege of hearing from Pastor Robert Morris from Gateway Church. Over two weekends, he taught our church about generosity, true blessing, and why God deserves our first and best.
One of the things that frustrates us the most is the response of others. Nowhere is this more evident than the holiday season, when we begin spending more time with those coworkers who complain too much and that sister who never listens to you. In this clip from our series I Won’t Survive The Holidays, Pastor Steven eases our frustrations by reminding us that the only response we can control is our own. And that’s the one that Jesus cares about most.
It’s fairly safe to say that the Church was not designed to be just another thing we check off our weekly to-do list. The Church Jesus died for and left His disciples to build was an exciting, magnificent, dangerous, Holy Spirit-filled movement of impassioned people who’s main objective was to spread the Gospel. But these type of words aren’t often used to describe the modern Church as we know it. So what happened? In this clip from our series “The Invitation,” Pastor Steven reminds us of what the Church was meant to be and what our responsibility is as members of the body of Christ.
Here’s the good news… we don’t live in Old Testament Israel and no one really struggles with worshiping golden calves anymore. But we’re in denial if we don’t recognize the idols that are on unnecessary pedestals in our lives. Everyday we find ourselves bowing down to our money, our jobs, our kids, other people’s acceptance – just to name a few. As Christians, we know the focus doesn’t belong here. So how do we change our perspective? In this clip from our series ‘Scarecrow In A Melon Patch,’ Pastor Steven teaches us how to unseat our idols by refocusing our attention.
As Christians, we can easily misinterpret our obedience to God. Often times we see our obedience as a favor we’re doing for God or as collateral when we go to Him bargaining for blessings. But God’s favor doesn’t work that way. We can’t predict the time and place of His provision in our lives. Or that it will even look the way we thought it would. But in part two of our Banner Years series, Pastor Steven teaches us a new perspective on obedience, and what God wants do in our lives, if only we can make room for Him.
We must all understand this – before we came into a relationship with God, we had no hope of victory over condemnation, anxiety, depression, or guilt. But when Jesus triumphed over all our sin, He changed the game forever. In this clip from the series, Killswitch, Pastor Steven teaches why, with Christ, we get to run up the score in our battle with the enemy.
As a Christian, does our faith sedate or activate? When we feel like we’re losing the spiritual battle for our life, is faith the consolation prize or our most valuable weapon? In this clip from the sermon series Give. Me. Faith. Pastor Steven teaches us the right way to wield our faith.
Everyone likes winning. It’s how we’re wired. No one really enjoys the ‘moral victory’ that comes with a loss. But many of us have a misunderstanding of what it means to really win. What does victory look like in our daily lives? And is winning even the point? In the first part of our new series Banner Years, Pastor Steven gives a new perspective on victory by teaching us where it must begin.
We have all been hurt by others. Sometimes that hurt ends up defining our lives. It keeps us from forgiving. But in this clip from our F-Bomb series, Pastor Steven explains why as Christians, forgiveness is our only option.
Throughout the Christian life, we can expect to experience seasons of blessing. But the Christian life is much more than just sunshine and rainbows. We should also expect to experience seasons of breaking. In this clip from the sermon Blessed & Broken, Pastor Steven teaches us why the breaking stage is so important.
As Christians, we tend to have selective memories. But our spiritual growth often times has less to do with learning something new or deep, and more about remembering what we already know. Remembering the goodness of God and what He’s done in our lives. Remembering our righteousness given to us through the saving grace of Jesus. Truths we already know – but we often forget. In the final sermon from our Ghost Stories series, Pastor Steven shows us how the Holy Spirit serves as our divine reminder of who we’ve become in Christ.
We are familiar with the Enemy. We know his favorite strategy for sabotage and we’ve felt the devastating effects of his assault. In this clip from our series Hebrews 12, Pastor Steven teaches us how to stand firm in the midst of battle.
How do we pray in the hard times? When our situation is bleak and it seems like God is nowhere to be found. How do we strengthen our faith in the midst of our pain and begin to pray with expectation? In this clip from our series Sun Stand Still, Pastor Steven challenges our prayer life with a new perspective on our faith in God.
We all have our different skills, gifts, and abilities. Those things we’re good at. The talents we get noticed for. That “special something” that we bring to the table. And when we’re in those situations where we were designed to succeed, it can be easy to crown ourselves and congratulate our individual achievements. But in this clip from our series The Prodigy In Me, Pastor Steven teaches us the true source and greater purpose behind all we accomplish.
Here’s a reality we all must face as Christians: Our salvation in Christ doesn’t mean our lives will be free of trial, pain or attack. The Christian life will never just be sunshine and happiness. Paul tells us in Ephesians that we are equipped with the full armor of God. But our armor is more than just decoration – it’s protection. The armor of God has a purpose in our lives because we still have an enemy and God has equipped us for battle. And in this clip from the series Grapes & Giants, Pastor Steven teaches what God promises us with His protection.
Many Christians struggle with not only defining who the Holy Spirit is, but what His purpose is in our lives. Is He supposed to be our life’s good luck charm? Is He the road map we should follow for life’s directions and decisions? Is He our long-distance connection to God in Heaven? Or does He do something else altogether? In the second part of our series Ghost Stories, Pastor Steven redefines for us the true purpose of the Holy Spirit and the cycle the Spirit follows in our lives.
Our Christian lives are marked by mountains and valleys. Times when we feel close to God. When our daily time with Jesus feels connected and powerful. When our prayers are full of worship and passion. And then – there’s the other days. When God seems distant or inconvenient. When we choose comforts over calling. When we ignore God’s voice in our lives. So how to we get back to the mountain top? How do we climb out of the valley? In this clip from our series Storytellers, Pastor Steven uses hide-and-seek and King David to teach us the power of living in the presence of God.
In each of our lives, there are areas where we struggle to give control over to God. It could be our dreams, our money, our comfort or even our sin. But what happens when we give it up? What happens when we fully surrender ourselves to God? In this clip from our series The Resistance, Pastor Steven explains what God requires from us if we want Him to fully use our life for His glory.
Most Christians can probably give you a quick and accurate description of who God and Jesus are. But what about the Holy Spirit? This part of the Trinity is a little more difficult to explain. Is it your conscience? Is it karma? Is it those goosebumps you get during a good worship song? Or is it something much more? In the first part of our series Ghost Stories, Pastor Steven pushes us to stretch our thinking about how we see God and His activity in our lives through the Holy Spirit.
We have all those days. Days that started well – then spiraled out of control. We are unraveled by bad news and burdened by circumstances that are beyond our capability to fix. In this clip from our series The Highest, Pastor Steven teaches us how to experience the deepest peace, even at our lowest moments.
It’s not always easy to convince the people in our lives that God knows what He’s doing. Sometimes, it’s hard to convince ourselves. How do we respond when God calls us to give, serve, or forgive when it feels unreasonable? How do we respond when He asks us to take a risk or step out in faith when it doesn’t make sense? In this clip, Pastor Steven challenges us to trust the God who told us to do it, even when the calling seems impossible.
The biblical principles for living a greater life in Christ are easy to read and underline and tweet – but when we close the book, and look at the reality of our lives, it becomes much harder to actually put them into practice. We quickly discover it’s not a neat, perfect formula. For the last part of our series GREATER, we took a look at several real-life stories from within our church. Through stories like the one in this clip, we were able to see firsthand what the greater life could look like in our lives as we begin moving forward in our relationship with God.
The Bible tells us that as Christians, we serve a God who answers prayer and who works all things in our lives for good. But that doesn’t mean that God operates on the timetable we’d always like Him to. There will be seasons where we have to faithfully lean into God’s promises and wait on Him. But what’s the best way to wait? And is there something we could be doing in the mean time? In this clip from our series Waiting Room Pastor Steven redefines for us what is means to really wait on God in our lives.
You prayed. You hoped. You gave. You tried. And it failed. Scripture never tells us the Christian life will be the easiest road or the most clean-cut story. But what kind of God plants something in your heart, only to let it die? What’s the point in that? And what does that say about God? In part 3 of our series GREATER, Pastor Steven teaches us about the true character of God when it seems like we’ve wasted our faith.
Is it possible that we dream too small? Have our goals become less than impressive? When did we become tired Christians, operating from a place of less faith and power than the world? In this clip from Get Back, Pastor Steven inspires us to leave lukewarm living behind as we move the Gospel forward for the next generation.
We are always on the move. At every point in our lives, we are advancing toward God’s calling or walking away from it. Sometimes we take incredible leaps of faith or simply consistent steps of obedience. Other times we hesitate to claim God’s promises or ignore His prompting altogether. In this clip from the sermon series, Where are They Now? Pastor Steven challenges us to live in such a way that leaves us in land God promised.
As Christians, our faith is far more than just rolling the dice with our prayers, hoping and wishing for God to do greater things in our lives. Having faith requires participation too. We see this over and over again throughout the Bible. The people God uses to accomplish greater things not only want God to move in their lives, but are also willing to work through their faith. And in this clip from part two of our series GREATER, Pastor Steven helps us redefine what an active faith in God really looks like.
So often as Christians, we live our lives as if we are auditioning for God’s love. We put on smiles, rehearse our lines, and spend our time waiting on God’s callback. We crave His affirmation and we’re crushed when we feel like we don’t measure up. In this clip from Living a Better Story, Pastor Steven gives us a unique challenge that can break this pattern in our lives and set us free to live as God intended.
The favor of God is unpredictable. It has nothing to do with anything we’ve done or are going to do. But when we encounter God’s favor, our lives change significantly—our boldness increases and our effectiveness is multiplied. So how do we experience God’s favor? Is there a favor formula? In this clip from our sermon series, Found Favor, Pastor Steven teaches us how to position ourselves so that when God’s favor flows, we don’t miss out.
We all have areas of our lives where we have settled. Areas where we’ve decided that “good enough” is good enough. But God hasn’t called us as believers in Jesus to merely survive the world, plodding along in our daily routine, waiting for the day we die. No, there’s more to our existence than that. In this clip from the first part of our series Greater, Pastor Steven talks about the greater life God calls us to, and the unconventional path we must follow to get there.
We are all a part of different teams. Whether it’s at your job or at your school or in your family. And even though we play different roles, we all have the ability to make our teams better or worse. Are you an asset or a liability? Are you gaining ground or losing yards? In this clip from the Summer Concert Series sermon “Sinkers & Savers,” Pastor Steven uses the life of Jonah to ask an important question about the relationships in our lives and the impact we are making on them.
Every weekend at Elevation Church we want to preach the love of Jesus. But it doesn’t end there. We also want to show the love of Jesus to our city. Outreach has always been a huge part of our church’s culture. In years past, we’ve done city-impacting initiatives like Love Week and The Orange Initiative. This year though, we’re shifting our focus to meeting the needs of specific individuals – students. Watch this clip as Pastor Steven explains the M1 Initiative, and our plan to reach the under-served and at-risk students of our city.
To sign-up for the M1 Initiative and make a difference in the life of students in the Charlotte area, click here.
As parents, we always want the best for our children. We want them to be kind and do well and follow the rules. But is that the best we should hope for? Have we set the standard too low for the next generation? In this clip from Student Takeover 2009, Pastor Steven shifts the perspective of what we should hope and pray for our children to become, while also challenging our students to take hold of God’s vision for their own lives.
Anger. Despair. Hopelessness. Depression. These are terms we have all defined at some point in our lives. Even the most optimistic people in the world can’t avoid seeing the glass half-empty sometimes. So how do you get back your joy in these moments? And if our joy is so valuable, why are we so easily derailed in the first place? In this clip from our series, The Joy Genome, Pastor Steven uses a misplaced wallet and keys to illustrate where true joy can be found, time and time again.
Think about everything valuable you’ve lost in your lifetime. Jobs. Relationships. Dreams. Years. Where did it all go? And why does God allow these things to leave? How can we trust a God who seemingly shakes up our lives, often when it seems like everything is falling into place? In this clip from our series Hebrews 12, Pastor Steven explains why as Christians, when we’d rather be constantly growing and flourishing, our lives are often marked by seasons of painful pruning.
We all, to some extent, live in “the gap.” Whether you are a lead pastor with a lifetime of experience, or a brand new believer in Christ – “the gap” exists. On one side is who God says we are and His commands for our lives. And on the other side is how we actually feel and what we do instead. Here’s the good thing – this isn’t a new struggle. Peter. Paul. Jonah. David. Adam. Over and over again throughout scripture you can see this schizophrenic juxtaposition. What God says. What we do instead. Repeat. So how do we fix “the gap”? In part 2 of our sermon series I Know He Is, But What Am I, Pastor Steven teaches us that closing “the gap” has less to do with our activity and far more to do with our identity. Watch this entire sermon from I Know He Is But What Am I?
There’s a myth that exists in many Christian circles today. It says that the Pastor of the church is the only one who can ever get anything done. It begins and ends with him. Our recent generations grew up in an age of the church where the Pastor was expected to do it all and be the man. He married you and buried you. He visited you at your house if you were a first time guest and he visited you in the hospital if you were sick. And for many of us, he was our only source of spiritual connectivity to Jesus. But in this clip from our series, E, Pastor Steven explains that when we turn our Pastors into superheroes, we are robbing ourselves of something greater God has planned for our own lives.
We are all condemned. That’s the clear and simple truth. Before Jesus died for us, the condemnation of sin was on all our lives. We were far from God and without hope in the world. But that was then. In Christ, we are new creations. The old has gone. The new has come. But the Devil likes remind us about our past condemnation. And for some reason, if we allow it, we let him talk us down and we forget who we have become in Christ Jesus. In the clip from our series Christ Alone, Pastor Steven teaches us a strong response to the Enemy when this word of condemnation begins to creep back into our thoughts.
No matter who you are, we all have at least one thing in common. We all share the natural, conscious desire to know who we are and why we are here on this planet. But before we can understand ourselves, we have to gain an understanding of who God is. If we don’t have a knowledge of the Creator, we’ll never fully grasp the purpose of His creation and the plans He has for us. In the first week of our series I Know He Is But What Am I? Pastor Steven laid the groundwork for his teaching by reminding us what the Bible says about the perfect character and matchless characteristics of our God. Watch this entire sermon from I Know He Is But What Am I?.
What is your favorite movie? Chances are that it’s not your favorite movie because of the key grip or the lighting technician. Nobody really knows who those guys are. It’s probably your favorite because of the main characters or the story told through them on the screen. In our lives, we often make the mistake of misunderstanding who the story is about. In this clip from our series Living A Better Story, Pastor Steven helps us shift our perspective about the role we really play in the story God has written for us.