Archive for the Things I put into my heart from a sermon Category

My Testimony

Posted in Me, Things I put into my heart from a sermon on October 19, 2011 by Annette Budd

After a three week Daniel fast in January of 2010, I heard God promise me that He would give me freedom in four areas of my life. These four things were problems in my life that I thought I would never overcome.  They made me feel trapped, discouraged and defeated. They were the kind of things that steal joy and life.

And then came February of 2010. Things seemed to be so much worse than they were in January. As the pattern continued into March and April, I was pretty sure that I must not have heard God correctly – that He really didn’t make those promises to me. I felt that these four things would plague me until I got to heaven. So, I settled back into my defeated attitude and just kind of resigned myself.

Then came August.  I go to Jubilee Fellowship Church and John Leach is my pastor. If you are searching for a place to seek God and receive life, Jubilee is it. Pastor John preached a sermon one Saturday (one of many) that changed my life.  He talked about how after God makes a promise, the first thing that always happens is that Satan comes and tries to steal that seed before it can grow into anything. He gave many Biblical examples of this – too many to list here.  If you are interested in them, I would encourage you to listen to his sermon from August 15, 2010.

Finally, things just all of a sudden made sense to me. It wasn’t that I heard God incorrectly. It was that Satan is an evil beast (I actually thought of a more fitting curse word to describe him, but I never curse so evil beast will have to do) and he wants to steal from me.  He wants to destroy me. He wants to kill me. And instead of resisting him and standing firm on God’s promises, I listened to the father of lies. Because I couldn’t see it with my eyes, I assumed the seed of that promise wasn’t really there. To reinforce this, that snake reminded me that all of my problems were not only there, they were growing bigger.

So after I came to the epiphany that since I was already in a war, I should stand up as a warrior and fight back.  The first thing I did was tell these promises to some trusted friends (I love you, Dan and Kerry Hoff).  And then I started to fight. I prayed, I watched and I expected. This, of course, caused Satan to hit us hard. Harder than we have ever been hit in our lives. He attacked everything he could find. And, trust me on this, he hits below the belt.

But I continued to trust God.  I decided I was not going to let go of His promises. And then things started to change.  Almost immediately I saw a miraculous change in one area.  It is like something that had tortured me for as long as I can remember was completely gone. It is too personal and intimate to talk about in detail publicly in this forum. Then I started to see gradual changes in another of area that he promised. This promise involved other people, so again, I can’t mention it here.  But I would like to testify that God has restored a relationship that has been bad for more than five years.

The other two things, I am very excited to talk about in more detail.

We have been through a lot of financial struggles.  Some of it was our own doing. We incurred debt, some of it was personal and some of it was business related, that was strangling us. And we also had something happen to us that was not our own doing and that got us in trouble with the IRS.  Now, if you have never been in IRS trouble, may God continue to bless you. The IRS has been a ruthless monster that we have been trying to appease. It has been a horrible experience.  Dealing with them has consumed the last four years of my life. I’m excited to say that last week, we were finally able to pay all their penalties in full! We still have one more item that we are trying to unravel with them but our taxpayer advocate is confident that the IRS is completely in the wrong on this issue and that it will resolve without costing us anything.

We also have made incredible progress on the rest of our debt. We are very grateful to Dave Ramsey and his financial freedom class. I’m not sure when we will be completely finished with it, but we are close.

And now for the news of the day.  Another one of God’s promises was fulfilled! When I stepped on the scale this morning, I hit my weight goal! I’ve lost 60 pounds.  For those of you who are math orientated, that is ten pounds for each of my six children. I’m not exactly sure how much I weighed before I got pregnant with Stina, but I am sure it is close to my weight right now.  I started going to Slimgenics at the very end of March.  I eat a very balanced diet and I go in three times a week for dietary counseling. No magic bullets here – it was a lot of hard work. But it’s done! I’m free! I no longer am dealing with the physical and emotional issues that were caused by that extra weight. I will now move into the balance and maintenance program that they have.  I think that lasts about six months.

So, to end this very long post, I want to leave you with Galatians 5:1:  It is for freedom that Christ has set us free! Stand firm then and do not let yourself be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Here’s the fantastic news for you:  You don’t have to be imprisoned by anything. Instead of listening to Satan’s lies, listen to God’s truth that will set you free.  He who called you is faithful and He will do it.

Joy in pain

Posted in Me, Things I put into my heart from a sermon with tags , on April 5, 2009 by Annette Budd

Today in church Pastor John Leach talked about pain. He reminded us of all that pain does – it brings us closer to God, it humbles us and it puts us in a better place to help others that we may have not been able to help if we had not gone through what was put in front of us.

And then he showed a video of Nick Vujicic. Nick, a man born without arms and legs (whose story is found here) is an amazing example of all that God can do in you when you give yourself to Him.

My obstacles are different from Nick’s, but God is teaching me everyday how to live my life with joy through these obstacles. Lately, God has been renewing my mind, my heart and my strength. Yeah God! Maybe my winter is finally coming to an end. (?) I sure hope so.

JFC Castle Rock

Posted in Things I put into my heart from a sermon with tags , , , , on March 1, 2009 by Annette Budd

I went to a campus church today. What’s a campus church? Our church, Jubilee Fellowship Church, has been doing some serious growing.  In fact, I think it even grows faster than my children do – which seems like an impossibility. So instead of building a bigger building, we start new campuses. Each campus has a pastoral staff, worship team and its own community. A DVD of the sermon that was preached at the main campus on Saturday night is played at each of the campuses. I really, really enjoyed the family fellowship atmosphere that this campus had to offer. I also really, really love the main campus to which we have been going. No matter how I look at it, I know that JFC has been a place where the life of God flows into our family. I am always filled, always challenged, always loved.

Today, Pastor DJ Smith, preached about what it means to be a worshiper. He taught that the value of what we worship is revealed by what we are willing to sacrifice for it. He gave the example of when Abraham was willing to offer his son as a sacrifice.  In fact, Abraham uses the words sacrifice and worship interchangeably. This reminded me of Romans 12:1, which says, “Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual act of worship.” It made me stop and examine my life, asking the question, “Do I live a life of worship?”

But my favorite part of the sermon was when Pastor DJ contrasted two amazing facts. First he showed a photo taken by the Hubble Telescope (I know one of the guys who designed it, by the way) of the Whirpool Galaxy. I think he said that it was 31 million light years away.  The image in the center of this is clear.

whirpool-glaxay1

Then he gave told us about laminin. Laminin is the substance in our cells that holds it all together. Without it, the cells that make our organs would not stay together. The image here is equally as clear.

laminin2God is present in the most distant, enormous far away place that we can fathom.  He is also present in the smallest parts of our lives. He holds it all together.

I have limitations.

Posted in Me, Things I put into my heart from a sermon with tags , on September 21, 2008 by Annette Budd

I have limitations.

Even though, on the surface, that seems like it would be an easy concept for me to grasp, it certainly isn’t. My God has NO limitations. Since He lives in me, fills me and sustains me, I sometimes feel like I shouldn’t have limitations. This has become a problem in my life. Pastor John Leach preached a sermon today that really impacted me. It seems that I am not the only one with this problem. This is a struggle in his life also.

He gave the following illustration in his sermon: Our lives are like reservoirs. God fills us. He is the source. A daily, real relationship with Him fills us up. I have this relationship. God pours His grace and his love into me in amounts that constantly amaze and astound me. He is faithful. Then, people come and tap into this reservoir. And, for the most part, this is a good thing. I have poured myself into a lot people. Most of the time, they grow and develop their own reservoirs and feed others.

This is a good thing. But then more and more people/things start to tap in and this is what happens:

This is not about not letting God fill me up. He does, every day, all the time. He is faithful. This is about my own limits. See God doesn’t change the size of my reservoir. The more people that tap in, the less there is of me. It is very unhealthy of me to live at this level – spiritually, emotionally and physically. I have limits.

I need to be way more careful about how much I am pouring out of my reservoir. I am going to spend sometime evaluating where everything is going. I am going to take care of myself. I don’t know what this looks like. I probably need the help of my friends and family to accomplish this. But it must happen.

Jubilee Celebrates 10 Years!

Posted in Things I put into my heart from a sermon on August 19, 2008 by Annette Budd

We have been going to Jubilee Fellowship Church for five years now – half of the time that it has been in existence. Words can’t even begin to describe what a blessing JFC has been to us.

We had been at our previous church from 1990 to 2003. Christina was a toddler and I was very pregnant with Elissa when we started there. Gary was on staff as a youth minister for many of those years. We had so many close relationships (and still maintain many of them) that it was very difficult for us to leave. Our children were VERY angry with us for leaving the only church that they ever really knew. . . . for a little while. In less than a month, our children were thanking us on almost a DAILY basis for bringing them to JFC.

I have never experienced a church like ours. There is so much life, so much freedom. The sermons completely fill us each week. In fact, we regularly listen to Pastor John for fun. Daniel (13) will pop in a Pastor John cd more often than he listens to music. For those of you who haven’t heard one of his sermons, I’m sure that you think that makes Daniel a very strange child. For those of you who have, you understand. And I am NEVER disappointed when Pastor Bob Smith, Pastor Dan DeMey or Pastor Terry Hilgers preach either. The preaching at JFC is second to none.

We feel so loved and cared for by the pastoral staff and other members of the church. We’ve gone through some very tough times (because, let’s face it: life is tough) since we have been part of JFC. Without doubt, I can say that we were never alone in those times. The church has stood with us and even held us when things got bad.

Because it is made up of a bunch of sinners (just like any other church), it isn’t perfect. People get hurt. I’ve been hurt. But there will never be a place this side of heaven where that doesn’t happen. Not everything the church offers works for everyone in our family all the time – but it is a place full of life and freedom. A place where the depths of my soul can experience God. I am so grateful.

Isolation

Posted in Things I put into my heart from a sermon on April 7, 2008 by Annette Budd

Pastor John, from Jubilee Fellowship – the greatest church in the history of the world, ever – is preaching a sermon series about deadly emotions. He was preaching about depression and I have definitely been in some strange sort of funk lately which is a least bordering on depression. (I am hoping this goes away when I develop some sort of normal sleeping pattern again.)

He talked about how some of the most isolated people in the world are young mothers. Okay, so technically I am NOT a young mother but I am a mother with young children. I couldn’t agree with Pastor John more. And why is it so easy for people in this situation to become depressed? Because there are so few grown-up voices speaking into our lives. I need these grown-up voices for balance.

I didn’t realize how out of balance I was until I became part of a grown-up conversation last week. I was in a group of people and a very sweet woman mentioned how frustrated she was about a certain situation in her life. Another woman, who was definitely in some sort of bondage to the issue that the first woman brought up, proceeded to pretty strongly condemn her for being in that situation. I interrupted the condemnation and spoke life and encouragement into the first woman. The issue at hand was one that almost every woman struggles with and I had truly resolved this issue in my heart years ago.

After I came home from this conversation, the enemy of my soul started condemning me with that very same issue. It was easy for me to see what had happened in that conversation and the reasons behind it. Why on earth, would I listen to and accept that condemnation? The answer: Isolation. Since adult conversations tend to be a rare commodity in my life right now, my mind easily focused on the negative voice because there simply weren’t enough other voices to listen to.

The solution: Annette MUST get out more and have more grown-up conversations.