42. Make Room for the New

Reading Plan

If you’re looking to dive deeper into what the Bible says about this topic, here’s a suggested Reading Plan, one passage per day for a whole week, based on the sermon:

  1. MONDAY: Acts 9:32-43
  2. TUESDAY: Acts 10
  3. WEDNESDAY: Acts 11:1-18
  4. THURSDAY: Luke 9:10-17 (left overs)
  5. FRIDAY: Mark 2 (new wineskins)
  6. SATURDAY: 2 Corinthians 5:11-21 (new creation)
  7. SUNDAY: Jonah 1

eGroup Discussion Questions – Great for personal reflection/journaling, too!

Sermon Notes: “Make Room for the New” ⤵️

Preacher: Steven Furtick
Passage: Leviticus 26:10
Title: Make Room for the New
Date: March 8, 2020

Today’s sermon notes were taken during the 9:30 livestream from the Ballentine campus.

Continue the message we started last week: There’s a Hole in Your Story—a little bit of a sequel, a mini-series.


  • Friend Ken Costa gives Pastor Steven this scripture: Leviticus 26:10:
    • “You will still be eating last year’s harvest when you will have to move it out to make room for the new.”
  • New” sounds sexy, we like new stuff, except when we don’t.
    • Last year I asked God to take my problems away from me, but he didn’t.
    • This year I’m asking for God to increase the quality of my problems
    • Not money —> Mission
    • Let God’s favor come to you
      • e.g., I tell my interns, you don’t need to go find your husband, put yourself in the path of God’s blessing
      • Let Cornelius come to you (Acts 10)
    • #BlessedChurchProblems
    • #BlessedPeopleProblems
    • #HighQualityProblems
    • “Let me run out of money buying Bibles for my children.”
    • Make room for the new — “I like new” — Really?
    • Some of us are so attached to the old that we can’t accept the new

A. Make Room for: Tension (Acts 11)

Acts 11 starts with the Jewish leaders saying in verse 3: “You went into the house of uncircumcised men and ate with them” and ends with 18: “So then, even to Gentiles God has granted repentance that leads to life.”

  • Your tolerance for tensions determines your potential for growth.
  • Growth = Time under tension
  • Imagine me telling my personal trainer, “Don’t put a burden on me” — I’d never grow! But we do this at church?
  • God is making room in your life through tension
  • It’s easy to be clear about the truth when you’re not living in the tension.
  • In order to make room for the new, God has to challenge the old.
    • The Jewish leaders didn’t want to do it. (Acts 11)
    • But they sat in the tension.
  • The tension is: Trying to protect while trying to accept.
    • Trying to believe by faith what they used to be able to touch.
    • Trying to believe in an unseen God when they used to be able to see their works of the law.
    • Just about the time they’re getting used to grace, now Peter is having food with the Gentiles.
    • How do we protect what God did and accept what he’s doing?

B. Make Room for: Resurrection (Acts 9)

Peter sent them all out of the room; then he got down on his knees and prayed. Turning toward the dead woman, he said, “Tabitha, get up.” She opened her eyes, and seeing Peter she sat up.
Acts 9:40, NIV

  • Change never makes an appointment with your calendar.
  • God is saying: Don’t chase “it.” Chase me.
  • God gave Peter an opportunity he wasn’t even praying for.
  • “I was in Joppa” (not posting, but praying)
  • Old mindsets cannot receive new miracles. (In Acts 9, Peter sent the people mourning Tabitha out of the room before he healed her, “Making room.”)
    • “Tabitha, get up” = Sounds like “‘Talitha koum!’ (which means ‘Little girl, I say to you, get up!’)” when Jesus heals Jairus’ daughter in Mark 5:41.
    • What do you need to say “get up” to?
    • God said, make room for resurrection
    • There are things in your life you’ve given up on, but God is saying “make room.”
    • If you take old patterns into new relationships, you can’t make room for the new
    • If your heart is full of bitterness, where are you going to put his blessing?

C. Make Room for: Change (Acts 10)

9 About noon the following day as they were on their journey and approaching the city, Peter went up on the roof to pray. 10 He became hungry and wanted something to eat, and while the meal was being prepared, he fell into a trance. 11 He saw heaven opened and something like a large sheet being let down to earth by its four corners. 12 It contained all kinds of four-footed animals, as well as reptiles and birds. 13 Then a voice told him, “Get up, Peter. Kill and eat.” 14 “Surely not, Lord!” Peter replied. “I have never eaten anything impure or unclean.” 15 The voice spoke to him a second time, “Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.” 16 This happened three times, and immediately the sheet was taken back to heaven.
Acts 10:9-16, NIV

  • “Jonah ran away from the Lord” (Jonah 1:3) to Joppa
  • Peter walked toward God in Joppa
    • What are you going to do in Joppa?
    • If you don’t embrace change, it’s still going to change.
    • Almost called it the “Jopportunity of a Lifetime”
    • Three things the Lord gave me:
      • 1. “a large sheet being let down to earth” (Acts 10:11) — Heaven comes to you, you don’t climb to God
      • 2. “Rise, kill, and eat” (Acts 10:13-15) — “Don’t call anything unclean,” don’t be limited by a label
    • What’s at stake in your Joppa moment?
      • Live in the space called “Maybe
      • This is the tension of the mystery
      • Blessing? Burden? Maybe both
      • The miracle is in the maybe
    • You didn’t lose “it,” God moved “it” to make room for the new.
    • Don’t be in a rush to what’s next, receive what God wants to give you right now.
    • 2 Corinthians 5:17, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!

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