On his first visit to City Harvest Church in March, Rick Godwin encouraged the congregation to find their “The Power of I must” in life and spend time pursuing it.
“Some men see things as they are and ask why; some men dream things that never were and ask why not?” Rick Godwin, founder and senior pastor of Summit Christian Center in San Antonio, Texas, said this in tribute to the late founding Prime Minister, Lee Kuan Yew, when he preached in City Harvest Church on the weekend of Mar, 28-29.
Singaporeans had been grieving the loss of the nation’s founding father, who passed away on Monday, Mar 23. Books of condolences were set-up in the reception areas for churchgoers to pen down words for the former Minister Mentor, while a photo montage of scenes from his life played on the big screen in the main auditorium. During service, Bobby Chaw, CHC mission’s remembered Lee’s life and achievements, and the church observed a moment of silence before Sun Ho, executive director of CHC performed a beautiful rendition of Dick Lee’s “Home” as a tribute to the late statesman.
Godwin started his message with John 10:14, which says, “I’m the good shepherd, I know my own and my own know me.” He reminded the congregation that as God’s sheep, they would listen to His voice, know Him and follow Him.
“When we say ‘I must’,” the pastor explained, “we confess that our life is not just about ourselves. We acknowledge that we are men or women of purpose, men and women with destiny. Saying ‘I must’ means we choose to persevere, we choose to have drive.”
Godwin spoke about the importance of priorities. “There are things you can do, there are things you should do, and there are things you must do.” He pointed out that Jesus was driven by “I must” His whole life. Even at the age of 12, Jesus would sit in the church for hours, listening to leaders and teachers as they shared the Word of God.
“If you can even get the attention of any 12-year-old for a minute, you are lucky!” quipped Godwin to an amused audience.
“When you recognize what you must do, it becomes easy to determine what to say yes to and what to say no to,” said the preacher. Jesus’ “I must” was always about people. In Luke 19:5, Zacchaeus, a tax collector who was disliked by the people in his hometown climbed up a tree so that he could see Jesus above the crowd as He walked past. “When Jesus reached the tree where Zacchaeus was, He looked up and said to him, ‘Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.’”
Jesus knew what His “I must” was, the preacher said, and He stuck to it relentlessly. He never gave up, not when He was doubted or when it became difficult to do. In the same way, Godwin encouraged the church to know and to remember what their individual purpose was. Knowing their “I must” would direct them to the right things to spend their time on.
“The greatest tragedy in life is to live a life without purpose,” Godwin said. “The poorest person isn’t a person without money, but a person without dreams.”
LIVING BY PRINCIPLE
Next, Godwin spoke of the prophet Balaam and the king of Moab, Balak. Balak was afraid that the children of Israel would attack his country, so he sent for Balaam to curse them. When Balaam finally arrived, Balak asked why Balaam did not come right away. Balaam replied, “Well, I have come to you now but I can’t just say whatever I please. I must speak only what God puts in my mouth.” Balaam had an “I must” and he wanted to stick to it.
Godwin challenged City Harvest Church members to be bigger people: people with bigger hearts, bigger dreams, and bigger visions. He encouraged the congregation not to be keepers of the aquarium, but to be fishers of men; to not just walk along to get along, but to challenge the status quo; to live by convictions and not convenience.