22 Jan 2014 by Natasha Kim CM-
C3 Regional Director, Pr Keith Edwards recently graced C3 Church, Subang, on the 12th of January, for their 3rd Anniversary celebration. It was just a couple of months ago when the church expanded it's walls to accommodate it's growing congregation. And by the looks of it, it won’t be too long before they would expand once more! Right before Pr Keith preached, Pr Clarance Shashi of C3 fondly recalled the day when his wife Deborah and he were sitting in Keith’s home, talking about opening up a church in Subang. “It was in his home that we felt it being birthed in our spirits,” he said. They are purpose-driven and have a strong calling to touch people’s lives. God didn’t call us to be comfortable; God called us to be radical and touch the lives of many!
Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes. (Isaiah 54:2)
“When God guides, God provides,” said Keith. He learned this through the trials and tribulations of trying to attain a church building many years ago. It was a time when Keith even questioned his own calling. "But then I remembered when everyone seemed to be against King David,” he shared. 1 Samuel 30:6 cited, “David was in deep trouble because the troops were talking about stoning him. Each of the soldiers was deeply distressed about their sons and daughters. But David found strength in the Lord his God.” According to the scripture, David had some time alone to think, away from those who mocked him. There, he encouraged himself through Christ to push forward! Keith remembered the vision that God gave him from the very beginning, that his church C3 Victory, would be a life-giving church, empowered by the spirit to influence the city for the Kingdom of God. “I started encouraging myself with that. As nice as buildings are, buildings are a method and a means, not the end!” he shared. Now C3 Victory is an ever-growing moving Church, with three services each Sunday at three different locations. God has a different plan for each of us.
“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” (Psalm 46:10)
He urged everyone to not get too comfortable where they are and to be prepared because growth comes with change! If the church keeps growing at this pace, there will be many changes in the years to come. “Vision without action is nothing. It’s amazing how people get attached to things and get upset when it’s time to move,” he said. He then quoted Thomas Edison who once said, “Vision without an execution is hallucination.” Act on your vision! “The steps of a good man and a good woman, are not just one step at a time, and to a different location but it’s a step going up and out to new heights and to new places. Forget what is, create what will be,” he said.
The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. (Psalm 37:23)
“Your faith should not be based on what is, but what has been said,” shared Keith. Combine your faith with works; you were given your senses and the ability to ultimately use them to appreciate what have been given to you and to apply the Word of God, turning it into action. “Faith and obedience is like the hand in the glove, faith is the glove but the glove is powerless until the hand slips in and starts doing something. Faith is dead until obedience activates it,” he said. He encouraged everyone to make the church renowned for God.
Faith and Redemption – With God nothing is impossible!
He then began to tell a story from the Bible about a barren woman with no children (Isaiah 54). During those days, barren women were frowned upon and said to be cursed by God and other's. They were said to be worthless because God turned away from them. God however redeemed that barren woman. “Redemption means that something has been put in the market of slavery and somebody comes into that market and buys it out of it, so it is no longer bound in slavery, and that’s what Jesus did for you and me. We were sold into slavery and nothing could pay that price but God Himself as a man. God always works on planet earth through flesh and blood. He’s not going to save Malaysia through mysteries and through big happenings; He’s going to save Malaysia through individual people like you and me,” said Pr Keith.
“God doesn’t enlarge the place so that you and I have more space to be comfortable, He does it so that you can reach more people. God has placed you into your place of impact and influence,” he added. As humans are made by God, each and every one of us plays a significant part. Nobody, is a nobody. God loves turning a nobody, into somebody so that they can do something significant,” shared Keith. You are never too small to make a difference in this world. “Allow the needs of other's in the world to stretch you and enlarge you. The needs of a city that is broken, lost and confused… they will enlarge you,” he shared. Often while looking into the needs of other's, we may get stretched to the point that we feel so thin. But we are put together into this world and we need each other. Most importantly, we need to be that Church that God needs us to be.
Be strong! Be fearless! Don’t be afraid and don’t be scared by your enemies, because the Lord your God is the one who marches with you. He won’t let you down, and he won’t abandon you. (Deuteronomy 31:6)