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Remember His Goodness
By Joel Osteen - Jun 14, 2019
We recently celebrated sixty years here at Lakewood. My parents started Lakewood on Mother’s Day in 1959 with ninety people in an old rundown feed store. They cleaned out the building, borrowed some old wooden pews. It didn’t look like much. But the Scripture says, “Don’t despise the day of small beginnings” (Zechariah 4:10). Don’t get discouraged because where you are is much smaller than what’s in your spirit. As a young man, my father knew he was going to pastor a church of thousands, but you have to be faithful with the small before God will trust you with more. That’s a time of testing, a time of proving. Are you going to slack off and think, “When it grows, I’ll give it my all. When I get some breaks, I’ll be my best”? You have to be your best right where you are. God is watching. He knows when you’re in a feed store and others are in nice buildings. Stay faithful. Your time is coming.

Sometimes when I pull up to our huge building on the freeway and see all the people gathered to worship, I feel a tear running down my cheek. It’s because I remember where we came from. My mind flashes back to the feed store, as a little boy sitting there with the ninety people and my father in front ministering. When I realize where God has brought us, how He’s opened doors that we never dreamed would open, how He’s taken us further than we can imagine, I can’t help but say, “Lord, thank You for Your goodness. Thank You for taking us where we couldn’t go on our own.” When you look back over your life, you’ll see the faithfulness of God, where He promoted you, protected you, healed you, favored you. Don’t take it for granted. It didn’t happen by accident, it wasn’t a lucky break, that’s the goodness of God.

As we celebrated sixty year, I can sum up how I felt in one phrase: “to God be the glory.” And we prayed, “Let God increase and let us decrease. May we make His name famous. Let us shine brighter, let us take new ground, let us affect the culture in greater ways. And we commit to always giving God the glory. We remember how He led us through the wilderness, how He supplied our needs when we didn’t see how it could happen, how He defeated giants that were much bigger, and how He sustained us for sixty years. May generations to come still be telling of God’s goodness from our building. Let it be a continuous lighthouse of hope.”
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