#153 (31/10/04)
Crafting Your Future: Discover God's Vision for Your Life

The Message

By: Robert A.Schuller

Special Guest

MICHAEL LANDON, JR
Michael is the director of the Hallmark channel award winning movie, “Love Comes Softly.” It’s now on DVD. “Love Comes Softly” is the highest rated movie ever to appear on the Hallmark channel, and he received many awards including the Movie Guide Award, and a Camie Award.

Special Music

Hymn
“Joyful, Joyful...”
" Standing on the Promises "
" O For a Faith that Will Not Shrink "

Solo
PAN FLUTE SOLO – NOORTJE VAN MIDDELKOOP - "My Jesus, I love Thee"
VOCAL ENSEMBLE – AVALON - "Creed"
PAN FLUTE SOLO – NOORTJE VAN MIDDELKOOP - "Hallelujah, Praise be the Son"
PAN FLUTE SOLO – NOORTJE VAN MIDDELKOOP - "Thine is the Glory"
PAN FLUTE SOLO – NOORTJE VAN MIDDELKOOP - "Psalm 19"

Acticle of The Message

Today I am beginning a 3-part series entitled, "Crafting Your Future." I use the word crafting because I believe your future is like a painting that you paint in your mind. It is a picture where you envision what is going to take place. That picture needs to be painted. It needs to be crafted. It needs to be sculpted. It needs to be artistically developed. As you paint that picture of your future, your future will be shaped accordingly.

Crafting Your Future begins with vision and continues with action, and is completed with determination. Crafting a successful future requires all three of these things, so we will first look at discovering God’s vision for our life and creating the future that will bring us the success that we desire and that God wants for us.
God wants us to prosper. God wants us to have a vision and He wants us to have dreams and hopes and aspirations. There are three things I want you to think about when casting your vision.

1) Give yourself a chance to succeed.

2) Think big enough. Think so big that there's room for God to fit in to your dreams and your vision and the picture you have for your life.

3) Paint that picture in oils, not watercolors.

1 Corinthians 2:5 says "Your faith" (or you can use the word vision) "Your faith (vision) should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God."

Those words give me hope. They give me the ability to dream bigger dreams and give me the realization to understand that God is big enough to do anything that I can imagine. Nothing is impossible with God. Begin by knowing where you want to go. Create a picture and develop a canvas. Develop an idea of where you want to go.
Without a destination you have no destiny. The greatest failures the world have ever seen are the hopes and dreams that have never left the minds that imprison them. Without a destination there is no destiny. There is nothing you can do. You are like a parked car without any means of moving. Without a destination you have no destiny. Only then can you be guaranteed to succeed. The beauty of having no destination is you can't get lost. You are guaranteed to succeed, because you are not going anywhere. There is no destiny. But, you will succeed at failure.

Give yourself a chance to succeed. Release the dreams, hopes and aspirations that are trapped within your mind and verbalize them. Suddenly, something will happen to you. Something miraculous will begin to take place in your life. You will realize that your dream and the picture you are painting is actually too small. Can you believe it? It is too small. We have to think big enough for God to fit in.

Ephesians 3:20 says, "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than we ask, or imagine according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory." No matter how big you can think; no matter how large your imagination, God’s power is greater. There is nothing you can imagine or create that will out live or out imagine the power of God. Nothing is impossible with God. Nothing.

I learned this lesson when I first entered the ministry. I had been in the ministry only 6 months, and I was called to leave the Crystal Cathedral and start a church in San Juan Capistrano. As my father and I were driving through San Juan Capistrano, I pointed to a piece of property. I said to my father, "I'm going to ask the owner of that land for 10 acres of his ranch. My father responded, "Robert, you know it's just as easy to ask for 20 as it is to ask for 10.

I said, "with that logic it's just as easy to ask for 40 as it is for 20. A hour later the decision was made. I would ask for the whole thing. The next day I sat across the desk from John Crean, the owner of the ranch. I said, "John, God is calling me to build a church and wants me to build it on your ranch. Will you give me your ranch?" To make a long story short, that ranch was donated to the Crystal Cathedral Ministries. A little over a year later after I met with him we held church services on his ranch, and God built His church!

We think in 10 acres. God thinks in the whole thing! Give yourself a chance to succeed and release those imprisoned dreams and hopes and speak them out, as impossible as they may sound. Speak the little even though it seems so impossible at the time. Then think big enough and have enough faith to allow God to fit in and create a miracle, and you will discover the power of God.
Finally, remember the picture that you are painting on the canvas of your mind. The picture or painting that you are creating as you craft your future needs to be done with oil, and not watercolors.
I'm sure many of you are familiar with watercolors and oils. There's a huge difference between the two. Watercolors take tremendous skill. If you take a watercolor and you put it on a page, then that paper is done. It is finished. There are no corrections.

Oils on the other hand are very different. First of all you have a canvas instead of a piece of paper. In addition to having a canvas you have a medium that you can continue to shape. If the color isn’t just right you can make it darker or lighter or you can change the shading or the brightness. If it doesn't work at all you can paint right over it. Paint it again.

So, the picture of the future that we paint in our mind needs to be in oils. We have the ability and the understanding and the realization that our future is very unpredictable. God gives us a dream and a glimpse as a seed. That is all it is. It is a seed. Once that seed and vision starts to grow and we start to work and allow God to move us, He will steer us. Then He can direct us. Then He can get us where we need to be. That will be where we will find our success.
We don’t know what our future holds, but we know who holds our future. God knows the future, because He holds it. We do not.

You paint with oils. Plans change. You think you have everything in order and you think you have everything in place, when suddenly you have a small pain and you go to the doctor and he says, "you’ve got cancer. I think you better get your affairs in order." You realize that the best laid plans...the greatest vision of all in the whole task of working toward our visions and our dreams and our goals isn’t in the actual accomplishment as much as it is in the journey. The vision is there for us to be able to know how to live. How to live today. How to give us hope. How to give us faith. How to give us the realization of the power of God working in our lives. So we live one day at a time, realizing that with God we can do all things. The most important thing of all we must remember, is there is one pure guarantee in life.

Michael Faraday and James Clark Maxwell were recognized as the foremost leading scientists of the 19th century. It was Faraday who actually discovered electromagnetic rotation. And we understand that today as the electric motor. He invented electromagnetic induction. We know that as an electric generator. He was a scientist of the highest order.

On his deathbed his scientific colleagues asked him about his speculations about life after death. He said, "Speculations, I have none! I am resting on certainties." He knew that in the end, when the journey was over that he would be in the presence of God forever.

We rest on those same certainties as we live a life of faith. You allow the seed to grow. You follow your destination and you discover your destiny. You live a life of faith.

Craft your future. Do it today. Paint the picture and release that picture by speaking it, verbalizing it and allowing it to become the guidance you need in your life today.

Next week we will continue as we look at the next step in Crafting Your Future: ACTION.
Pray with me: "God, we thank you for this incredible privilege we have to be used by You. Touch us, lead us and guide us we pray in Your Son’s name. Amen.


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