10 Catalyst Conference TakeAways

Don’t you give your life to something small. –Andy Stanley

Andy is telling the story of the man who would walk into the room every Tuesday and ask him, “Watcha workin on big?”….and I’m dreaming for my own children. Because story does that.

We weren’t meant to think small, dream small or settle. When we dream in the image of a BIG GOD, small stays at the drawing board and we walk out into the mystery of miracles.

Doubt dies unborn if it’s never spoken. – Christine Caine

Your mouth, believer! Your mouth. What power resides there! It’s not question of IF doubts will assail. They will. It’s about what we do with that doubt. What faith will we give life to today? What will we speak forth about our family, ourselves, our city, our church? What are you saying? Do you believe? Let’s shut down doubt at the door of our minds and say, NO – if my God said it, He can do it. We are well able to take the land.

Stir and Disturb. – Andy Stanley

Leaders are called to stir up the dreams within the people they serve. Are we disturbing the status quo enough to make a lasting difference and cause others to dream again? We must keep wonder alive in the hearts of those we love. Who knows but what dream they have that will change the world.

Awakening starts with thanking. –Chris Brown

To awaken our world to the crisp morning joy of our Lord, we must be grateful. We take light into the darkness of despair when we rebuke the lie that He is not enough. He cannot inhabit praise we never bring forth. But when we do, walking through the doubt, the darkness and the thoughts of lack – we find a new song. It’s a song the world needs to hear. To give thanks is to bring Him glory right where we are. It’s why we were made. And it will awaken the wonder of those around us to the God we worship.

Be a student, not a critic. – Andy Stanley

Because if you are a critic before you are a student, you shut down the wonder. What if progress is disguised as a different you don’t like. What if you don’t have the entire background story of someone’s life or theological stance. What if the church thought well of each other first.

Impossible is where God starts! – Christine Caine

If you were sitting in the room with 11,000 people and your spirit didn’t jump, you missed it. THIS can stir and disturb and rock your maybe into a big wide open YES for His call. But it starts with HOW we see what is right in front of us. When  you hear impossible, will you know God is about to enter the circumstance? Why do we pray for miracles and then live within our own power, giving Him absolutely no room to bring a miracle. If your dreams are small enough to accomplish on your own, they are not big enough. If what you are asking for is just NOT done, that’s the realm God has room to move in. Recently, I came against a statement about what could not happen with prayer – and guess what? God answered. He specializes in impossible. Don’t miss it!

Replace how with wow.  – Andy Stanley 

Ideas make the world go round. Details come later. When we shut down an idea because it feels TOO BIG, TOO UNDOABLE – we miss the opportunity to display the power of God to the world. What if we responded first with “WOW” instead of I just don’t know how that will happen. Let’s choose to wow the world with the dreams stirring within. Be the one in the room that says, “What if God did this for us, through us?” What if…….

If you are in Christ, you are always on the other side of the Red Sea. – Trip Lee

He HAS rescued us. He HAS redeemed us. He HAS moved on our behalf. How often do we talk about what prayer He has not seemed to answer instead of counting the miracles lined up behind us. Perhaps our nighttime ritual should be to count the miracles. Remember – God created the heavens and the earth with his outstretched arm. NOTHING is too hard for Him.

Here’s my job: when you’re drowning, I find you and bring you to the surface. – Brene’ Brown

We are family. It starts at home and moves into the church. When we see someone drowning – we reach down. We get down on their level and pull them up. None of my stuff matters when my husband is drowning in life. To flourish best, we flourish together. If one is weak, we are all weaker than we are strong.

Remain suspicious that God is up to something good. – Margaret Feinberg

In the midst of it all. Right there. Right now. He can make something good spring up. Are you making room for Him. Are you on the edge of giving up today? Call someone. Reach out. Pray again. Don’t you give up on a God who is out for your very best.

The Lord Wants to Dance with You

Seven years ago we gathered, a small group of us, in the home of a wonderful prayer warrior couple. It was a finishing, a closing retreat to thank the Lord for all He had done for us and through us in prayer ministry. During the time, someone began to speak prophetically over a few people in the room, and the man asked me if I liked to dance. He sensed a nudge from the Lord telling me to dance for Him. I had just met this man.

I grew up dancing. There is something about the beauty of the body suspended in open air.

SK DancingWe were created for worship, even in….perhaps mostly through….our bodies.

Add sound, this utterance created through the very breath of God, and you are captured. The movements enhanced, the eyes following. To watch the dance is captivating. To create the dance can be exhilarating.

In 2 Samuel 6, the writer tells of when King David, “wearing a linen ephod, danced before the Lord with all his might, while he and the entire house of Israel brought up the ark of the Lord with shouts and the sound of trumpets.”

It was spontaneous. Unplanned. Unscripted. The springing forth from this joy that caused him to express outwardly what confidence he had in His God. To do so with all his might meant he was unbound.

“Now the Lord is the Spirit and where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom.” 2 Corinthians 3:17

That word freedom comes from the Greek word Eleutheros, which means unbound, unfettered….the state in which one can act and move without restriction or hindrance.

When the Spirit can work unhindered within us, we will worship Him without restriction.

When He has full reign in our lives, we will experience complete freedom from the fear or thoughts of man. King David had no concern for those around him. He found his joy in the Lord and the result was a dance.

Later Samuel notes that when King David’s wife, Michal, saw him leaping and dancing before the Lord, she despised him in her heart.  She was jealous of the joy and freedom that can only come from the Lord. Because deep down, she wanted it.

Two days ago, I had a dream. I was dancing. I felt the freedom and release of those days on stage long ago. And then, what some may call coincidence, I “happened” upon the song “We Dance” by Bethel today. And while lying in bed, tears rolling down, I felt the Spirit speak to me.

I want to dance with you.

It was not just a call to dance before the Lord, but to take His hand and dance with Him. Immediately I traveled back in my mind to that moment of prophecy. I noted that in the dream, I looked better, stronger, more graceful than I believe I really am.

God sees us as beautiful.

Then stronger, louder in my heart than before, was one sentence. “I love you as you are.”

He sees you differently than you see yourself. He knows your weaknesses, but He’s focusing on your strengths. He rejoices over us with singing and then gives us a new song.

There is a song inside of you. It’s for the Lord.

The music of our soul is worship; it’s why we were made. But worship is more than singing with the mouth or dancing with the whole of us. The song is from the Spirit, and He is wooing you to the Creator who breathed the stars into place.

Do not despise the joy you see in others. Take the hand of the Lord, turn your face to Him and sing your song. He just may ask you to dance.