Paradise is not found on some south sea island. Paradise is found through knowing Jesus Christ. And when you know Jesus Christ, he wants to make you a witness to the world.
Living The Dream
When Jesus comes into your life, you are fully redeemed! You are set free and He gives you a great purpose and calling. In this series, Pastor Lawson explains how we receive vision from God and how we grow in it and live it out. The picture inside of you will determine the picture on the outside! Keep walking with Jesus and the dream He placed inside of you will surely come to pass!
Living The Dream Transcript
Praise the Lord, friends, I’m so glad that you’re with us today. We are talking about living the dream, and the dream is not on some south sea island. Paradise is not found on some south sea island. Paradise is found through knowing Jesus Christ. And when you know Jesus Christ, he wants to make you a witness to the world. We’re gonna be sharing about that today. So open your heart and receive the good word of God. Blessings. Friends, it’s so good to have you with us today. We’re talking today about living the dream. And I’m so glad Aaron’s here with me. We begin yesterday in Psalm 126, and the scripture says here in Psalm 126:1, “When the Lord turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like those who dream.” And when you look at that, he’s talking about when Israel came out of captivity and they came back into their promised land. So we talked about that yesterday. We talked about, praise God, we can compare this today with living in covenant blessing, and we can also compare it with redemption. Thank God in Christ we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins according to the riches of His grace. We moved on and talked about not only are we living in this covenant blessing and all these good, amazing things that God’s given us, but living in redemption. But we talked about we can have tremendous, tremendous joy. And joy is a product of salvation. Isaiah 12:3 says, “Therefore, with joy, shall you draw water from the wells of salvation.” The Bible says that, “The joy of the Lord is our strength,” in Nehemiah 8:10. You know what? The devil is trying to steal your joy. Somebody said years ago, “If the devil can’t steal your joy, then he can’t take your goods.” And you know what? There’s a lot of people that are getting robbed by the devil because they’re letting him steal their joy. The Bible says in Romans 14:17, “The kingdom of God is not meat and drink, but righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” He says, “Then our mouth was filled with laughter. Our tongue was singing. Then said they among the heathen, ‘The Lord has done great things for them.'” And that gets us to the third aspect, third point I wanna talk about in Psalm 126, and that is when we are living the dream, when we’re living in covenant blessing, enjoying redemption, that we have extreme joy. But this is a witness to the world. And we wanna read in Jeremiah. Aaron, if you wanna read Jeremiah 33, and I think we begin reading here, Jeremiah 33:6 and we’ll read down through verse 11. Jeremiah 33:6-11.
It says, “‘Behold, I will bring it health and healing. I will heal them and reveal to them the abundance of peace and truth. And I will cause the captives of Judah and the captives of Israel to return and will rebuild those places as at the first. I will cleanse them from all their iniquity by which they have sinned against me and I will pardon all their iniquities by which they have sinned and by which they have transgressed against me. Then it shall be to me a name of joy, a praise, and an honor before all nations of the Earth who shall hear all the good that I do to them. They shall fear and tremble for all the goodness and all the prosperity that I provide for it.’ Thus says the Lord, ‘Again, there shall be heard in this place of which you say it is desolate without man or without beast. In the cities of Judah, in the streets of Jerusalem that are desolate, without man, without inhabitant, and without beast, the voice of joy, the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the voice of those who will say praise the Lord of hosts, for the Lord is good, for his mercy endures forever. And of those who will bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the Lord, for I will cause the captives of the land to return as at the first,’ says the Lord.”
And so, you know, He’s talking about Israel and the restoration of Israel. But when we look at this, we can also relate this to church and the church today, because when the Holy Spirit was poured out, the Holy Spirit was poured out in Acts 2, it happened in Jerusalem on a hill, Zion. And so when we see these promises to Israel, there’re also spiritually really talking about the church. And so thank God, I do believe in the physical, literal restoration of the nation of Israel. I believe the promises that God made to Israel in the Old Testament, all of them are true. And all of the promises that God’s made to Israel, such as in Romans 9, 10 and 11 are true. But also, this can figuratively and spiritually be speaking of the church. So when the church is walking in relationship with God, God brings health, a cure, abundance of peace and truth. He brings them into the promises. He says in verse nine, “It will be to me a name of joy and a praise and an honor.” I believe God wants his church to be this, you know, a name of joy, praise, and honor before all the nations of the Earth, “When they hear all the good that I do to them.” God has been really good to us as a church. Praise God. He’s blessed us and helped us. He says, “For all the prosperity, I procured it.” He goes on and talks about, “In this place of restoration, the voice of joy, the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, the voice of the bride, the voice of those who say praise the Lord of hosts.” I’ve always taught that the Lord of hosts is the God of the armies of Israel. Aaron, recently you had a teaching and you showed us in the scripture that many times when the scripture talks about the Lord of hosts, it’s talking about the God of angel armies. And thank God we have angel armies. And so, “And they’ll say the Lord is good and His mercy endures forever.” So thank God for the blessing, the goodness of God that we have as His body in the covenant that we’re really living the dream. The dream’s found in Jesus.
Yeah, and I love too, you know, just this picture of a great wedding feast. And we know that Jesus is often depicted as the groom and the church as the bride. And I just love this song that is quoted here, “Praise the Lord of hosts for the Lord is good for his mercy endures forever.”
That’s just a powerful song to sing. And that’s really the song of praise and worship that should be coming from the church today onto Jesus.
And also in this chapter, it talks about the Lord our righteousness, one of the redemptive names of God. It occurs earlier in Jeremiah talking about the Messiah, how you know his name, the Messiah’s name would be the Lord our righteousness.
Jehovah Tsidkenu. And here it says, this is actually the name of this new Jerusalem.
It’s the name of the city of God, all of us believers. The name that by which we are called is the Lord our righteousness.
Amen. You know, earlier in Jeremiah, I think it’s Jeremiah 23:6, the scripture says the name, and it’s a prophecy of Jesus, wherewith he shall be called is the Lord our righteousness. But then here in Jeremiah 33:16, it says their name, wherewith she shall be called. So we have the righteousness of Jesus ascribed to us as the church is the Lord, our righteousness.
And really, the only way we can receive that name, the Lord our righteousness, receive righteousness from him, is through grace, through mercy.
And know it says, “For the Lord is good. His mercy endures forever.” The Hebrew word for mercy it means, it’s the same as the Greek word charis, which is grace.
Wow. That’s awesome.
Our church name is Charis Christians Center. So whenever you see mercy in the Old Testament, it’s usually that same word, that we use, you know-
Wow. That’s awesome.
Yeah. So, you know, we’re talking about, we’re living the dream, the dream’s in the covenant, the dream’s living in the blessing of God. The blessing of the Lord, the Bible says, “Makes rich and He adds no sorrow with it.” As we live this dream, we have extreme joy and God makes us a witness to the world. Now Aaron, recently, you were teaching here in the church and you were talking about joy and you were actually counseling someone, I love this. And you told this person, “Listen, for 30 days when you pray, I don’t want you to do anything besides pray in tongues or thank God.”
Because a lot of people get negative in their prayers. I’ve actually told some people before that they haven’t been in the presence of God, because I said, “In the presence of God, there’s fullness of joy. You come out of prayer looking like you’re saddened, defeated, and beat up by the devil. And that’s because you’re focusing more on the problem than the promise.” I thought, boy, that’s great advice. Pray in the Holy Ghost and thank God.
Do that for 30 days in your prayer time and see what happens.
Yeah, and really prayer, it’s just time spent communicating with God. And you know, I could tell that this person is just very frustrated in his prayer life and just frustrated that, you know, with things about prayer. And I just told him, don’t even say a word of English unless it’s thanks giving.
‘Cause I could tell there wasn’t much thanks giving going on in his prayer life.
But really, every believer has a lot to be thankful for and thanks giving should be-
A part of your prayer life and we do have needs, we do have things that happen to us where we need God to help and it’s okay to ask for help. But if you never thank him for anything, maybe just completely do a 180 in how you pray and just only thank God for a while. Just be thankful.
And another thing you said along these lines, Aaron, you said, “If you’re not happy, pray in tongues till you get happy.”
Now the Bible talks about this is the rest, this is the refreshing, Isaiah 28. “Where I cause my people to rest.” And you know, “With stammering lips in another tongue while I speak to this people.” That’s great advice, Aaron. And you know, the Bible actually says in Acts 13:52, “The disciples were filled with the Holy Ghost and with joy.” And that’s after they just got run out of town for preaching the gospel. And you study that, the end of Acts 13, where the Jews got jealous and ran Paul and Silas out of town and whoever was with them. And then in Acts 14, they ran him out of another town and then another town, and then they stoned him at Lystra and left him for dead. The disciples gathered around and raised him from the dead. And Paul, you talk about persistent, man, he got right back up and went right back and retraced his steps where they just run him out of town, where they just stoned him, where they just chased him and preached the gospel to ’em. Boy, he was diligent.
Well, and Paul, Paul prayed in tongues a lot. He wrote that, “I thank God that I pray in tongues more than you all.”
So he probably prayed in tongues hours a day.
Yeah, when you look at some of the natural things that he faced, they were very difficult, they were challenging. But, you know, we are living the dream and we need to realize how blessed that we are as believers. If you are born again, you’re blessed and you might have to rearrange your thoughts about some different things. I went through something here recently and it seemed like I had a big loss, but the Lord just told me, “You know what? You could be on the other side of the world and you could be in the Ukraine, for instance, where you’re getting bombed by the Russians and just have your building destroyed and have no hope.” And you know what? You can be happy because you have a relationship with Jesus. You don’t have to be happy ’cause everything went your way. Praise God. And so what the Bible says, “Happy is the people whose God is the Lord.” So, these covenant blessings, when we walk in these covenant blessings, in the promises of redemption, when we begin to walk in the joy of the Lord and begin to really demonstrate Jesus, I love something Mark Hankins says, he said, “God wants to bless you so much that he makes your life an advertisement of ‘This is how I treat my kids.'” And that’s powerful. And it makes our life a witness to the world. Our life should testify to the world that God is a good God. Amen. You know, the Bible says, if the Lord is our God, we ought to be happy as the people, who the Lord is their God. So Jesus is our Lord, he’s our God, and we ought to be happy.
Amen. We got something to rejoice about. We’re gonna take a short break. We’re gonna come back and we’re gonna share some more things, some things I’ve actually never seen in over 35 years of intensely studying the word of God that I just recently seen. And you don’t want to miss the rest of this broadcast. So stay tuned and we’ll be back. Thank you so much. Blessings. Friend, I’m so glad that you’re with us today and watching “Living the Dream.” I have these teachings on the website and from when I taught it live in church also. CharisChristianCenter.com. They’re downloadable in audio and video and they’re absolutely free of charge, plus many others also. Blessings.
There’s so much power in the spoken blessing. Things happen in the spiritual realm when you speak the blessing. You might not see anything happening in the physical realm, but you need to speak the blessing because things are happening in the spirit realm. There is a blessing in the congregation.
Friends, I’m glad you stayed with us. We’re here in Psalm 126. We’ve been talking about living the dream. And the dream is when you walk in covenant with God, you begin to experience his blessing, begin to experience the promises of redemption, live in the joy of the Lord. You know, the joy of the Lord is our strength. Joy is a fruit of the spirit. It’s not because everything on the outside always goes right but you don’t have to just, you know what, you can rejoice, praise God, and you can glorify God. And then it says in verse three, “We’ll say the Lord has done great things for us where we’re glad.” It’s a witness to the world when we begin to walk in these covenant blessings. But then he says in verse four, “Turn again our captivity, oh Lord, as the streams in the south.” I love this in the modern English version, it says, “Restore our captives, oh Lord, as the streams in the Negev.” The Negev was a desert. It’s the largest desert in Israel. It’s in the south part of Israel. And so what happens, Aaron, when you get streams in a desert?
Yeah. You get, new things come forth, you get salvation. You get the baptism of the Holy Spirit. All these are things that come from the spirit of God, when the spirit of God begins to flow. And so we’re gonna look at some of these things. Acts 3:19 talks about when there will be times of refreshing, I believe there’s times of refreshing that come from the spirit of God. And so Acts 3:19 talks about that. One thing that can be refreshing, Jesus talked to the woman at the well in John 4:14. And he said, “Whoever drinks of the water that I give him will have in him a well of life springing up into eternal life.”
That’s awesome. And we have that. As believers, we have that well of life, that eternal life that’s placed inside of us in our spirit.
So every believer has that, you know, the Spirit of Christ in you. But it also says, if you don’t have the Spirit of Christ in you, then you’re none of his. So all of this joy my dad’s been talking about, this peace, this eternal life, it’s all placed in your spirit. So it actually overrides what you’re feeling, what you’re dealing with sometimes on the outside. Sometimes you don’t feel like being joyful. You don’t feel like, you might feel like just being depressed and just staying in bed all day. But inside of you, you have the joy of the Lord. And that’s what’s your strength. And the Holy Spirit will help that bubble up out of you. And when you tap into that, it’ll shift you.
Yeah. Amen. It’ll shift your focus and get you out of that depression. We don’t have to live in depression. We make a choice, though, to believe God. You’ve gotta, if you’ve been struggling with depression, make a choice, believe God. Start looking at what God says about you. Start looking at who you are on the inside. I love another thing you shared recently while you were teaching, you were talking about how we have the divine nature. We have the nature of God. His divine power was given to us. All things pertaining to life and godliness through our relationship with Jesus. It’s there. And it goes on, that 2 Peter 1:3, it says, “Because of this, we need to focus on the word and through the promises of God.” Man, the promise of God ought to be exciting to us as believers.
I’m excited about it. You know, I grew up in a dead church. I grew up in a traditional church. I grew up in a church that really did not believe in a lot of the promises. We just kind of thought, well, you know, we’re just going through life and we’re trying to make it. But you know, I got filled with the Holy Spirit when I was 14 years old at Andrew Wommack’s Bible study. And I found out there’s a Bible full of promises you can believe in and it transformed my life. And I’m telling you, my life is 10 times as good as if I wouldn’t have ever got ahold of this good message, I probably wouldn’t even be alive right now. Praise God. And so God changed my life. But he says, “When we begin to think about it, the Lord has done great for things for us. We’re glad that now we’re living where there’s streams in the desert.” Salvation is one aspect. The baptism of the Holy Spirit is another aspect of that. John 4, Jesus talked to the woman at the well and said, “If you’ll drink the water I give you, you’ll have out of you a well springing up in you.” But then in John 7:37-39, when Jesus was at the feast and he began to talk to them, he said, “Whoever believes on me out of his belly will flow a river of living water.” So salvation is like a well in us, bringing life to us. But the baptism of the Holy Spirit’s like a river flowing out of us. One reason God wants you to get baptized in the Holy Spirit is so you can be an effective witness to other people.
Yeah, and really, the Holy Spirit, part of it’s ministry, when you look in scripture and just things that I’ve seen in my walk with the Lord, the Holy Spirit, a byproduct of the ministry of the Holy Spirit is always joy. And I’ve noticed people who are really offended by the Holy Spirit, they’re often offended by joy and outpourings of joy and expressions of joy.
And really, that joy the Holy Spirit goes, it’s a supernatural kind of joy.
That’s why James can write, in the first chapter of James, “Count it all joy.”
When you fall into diverse trials. Things happen here. This Earth is not perfect. And as a believer, there are gonna be things that come against you. But you can operate in supernatural joy.
That’s not dependent upon circumstances. If your joy is just based off of circumstance, then your joy really isn’t supernatural, it’s just circumstantial.
But the Holy Spirit gives a supernatural joy.
That isn’t based on circumstances. It’s not just based on what’s going on around you.
The Bible actually says that the wicked, even in mirth, their heart is heavy. So the world that’s not born again, that don’t know Christ, they don’t have joy as a fruit of the spirit. And even when they throw a big old wild party, their heart is heavy. They have to do these things on the outside. But you know what? We can have a joy that’s on the inside that no matter what’s happening on the outside, we know Jesus, praise God. And I’ve been in, what some people would consider pretty extreme negative circumstances and still been happy. Praise God, ’cause the joy of the Lord is my strength. And thank God we have the joy of the Lord. So the Spirit of God is the one who brings salvation, who brings the baptism of the Holy Spirit. The baptism of the Holy Spirit brings refreshing, brings joy, brings life, and new things break forth. When you got rivers in a desert. He said, “Turn again our captivity, Lord, as the streams in the south, as the streams in the Negev.” It says that in the modern English version in Psalm 126:4. But then he goes on and says this in the last two verses, he says, “Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy. He who goes forth and weeps bearing precious seed shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaths with him.” Praise God. So there’s gonna be a harvest. And I thank God for a last day harvest on this Earth. Praise God. The Bible says in Joel 3:14, “Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision before that great and notable day of the Lord shall come.” And Aaron, you recently, again, in a message taught, and you were sharing about how when you were in college and you were either a junior or senior doing a recital, you had a captive audience, and you just shared the love of God with everybody there. You just took a few minutes and preached the gospel. And you said this one person, who was a homosexual, came up to you afterwards with tears in his eyes and said, “I never knew that God loved me. I never heard that.” And so many times, we in the church, we look down on people because of, you know, some type of sin that they’re caught up in. But if we would just share the love of Jesus and share the goodness of God, I know even the church that you went, it is a great spirit filled, you know, word of faith, Grace Church in Pittsburgh where you went, but the pastor’s mom would take you home many times from church on Sunday. You rode two buses to get there, took you an hour and a half to get there. But you said she would just pray for the waiters and different people. Many times, you said you could tell they were living in sin and living an alternate lifestyle, but when she would pray for ’em, they would just break down and cry.
You know what, the world needs to know the love of God. And a lot of times we get caught up in politics, we get caught up in other differences that we have with many times how the world or different people look at things. But we need to realize that these people need Jesus. And they might have a different political view or whatever, but they need Jesus. And they need to be baptized in the Holy Spirit. If they get saved and get filled with the Holy Ghost, it’ll help ’em.
I love this last verse of Psalm 126, actually the last two verses, Psalm 126 5-6. It says, “Those who sow in tears shall reap in joy.” So maybe you’re one of these people who just, you know, going through a tough time. And I like that it says, “Keep sowing.” If you’re gonna sow, it means you’re looking to the future. You’re believing for something that’s gonna change. You might just be sowing now, but there’s a harvest that’s coming.
And, I just love that it says, “Doubtless you’re gonna come again with rejoicing and you’ll bring those sheaves with you.”
And I just think that’s a great picture of the church. Just keep sowing. The church will keep sowing. Keep preaching the gospel, keep preaching the word of God.
The the word of God is a seed and we need to keep sowing that, keep investing that, and it’s not always easy, but keep preaching the word of God.
1 Peter 4:10 says, “As every man has received the gift, so let him minister one to another as the good stewards of the many sided, the manifold grace of God.” So grace is really like a diamond and it has many facets of many sides. But we all need to minister. And one thing that we all should continually remember to minister is that we need to share our testimony. But you know, there are people, every born again believer ought to be sharing the message of reconciliation. The message that God’s not mad at you, that he loves you, that he already paid for your sin in Christ. You can read about it 2 Corinthians 5:17-21. But that’s the message that we should be sharing and we should be telling people how we receive Christ. It wasn’t that long ago, Aaron, you preached a message on a Sunday morning. We had at least five people born again that Sunday morning, I think three in the early service, which is usually the smaller service. And there were probably more than two in the second service. But you know, we give altar calls regularly at the church for people to receive salvation, to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. But we as individual believers should be sharing with people wherever we’re at. I had a man that comes to our church. He’s down from the La Junta area, about 100 miles from here. And there’s a number of families from that area that drive up and commute to come to our church. But he saw this woman stopped alongside the road, and his daughter, he’s an older man up in his ’70s, but his daughter’s good friends with her and he saw her there and so he stopped to help her and she was crying and had been going through a hard time. And he ministered to her and asked her if she knew Jesus. And she said, “Well, I’m a good friend of Jesus.” But then he asked her, “Well, have you received Jesus as your savior?” And she said, “Well, no, I haven’t. I haven’t ever received Jesus as my savior.” And he led her to the Lord. And you never know when you’re gonna meet somebody at the grocery store or Walmart or wherever you’re at, at your work. But there’s people that need to know Jesus. Praise God.
Amen. Well, thank you for joining us today. If you’d like prayer or to connect more with our ministry, maybe become a partner, you can call us here. You can also connect via our website. We also have a great app. We actually have hundreds of hours of free teaching available. But if you need anything at all, we’d love to connect with you. Feel free to give us a call.
I wanna just say, thanks so much for being with us. We appreciate you, God bless you, and you can check us out on the website at CharisChristianCenter.com. If you happen to be in Colorado Springs on a Sunday, meet us at church or watch us on the livestream.
Faith isn’t just a momentary thought or burst of emotion. It is a lifelong commitment to trusting in God and his unfailing work. Now is the time to take a step of faith and trust in God’s plan for your life. We’d like to bless you with a digital copy of the teaching, “Living The Dream,” a $15 value free of charge. Download it today at CharisChristiansCenter.com.
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