Daniel Fast 2023

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Message Text

Isaiah 54:2

“Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes.

John 15:5-8

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

Message Notes

1. There is more available than you are using.

Potential: latent qualities or abilities that may be developed and lead to future success or usefulness.

The image of “stretching” the tent curtains paints a picture of untapped potential in what we already have available. Stretch your tent curtains wide.

2. Developing a Stretch mentality.

We always determine our future capability by examining our past performances. If you have succeeded you’re more like to think in terms of success. If you have failed, failure will be a main factor in every decision moving forward.

Jeremiah 1:4 The word of the Lord came to me, saying, 5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” 6 “Alas, Sovereign Lord,” I said, “I do not know how to speak; I am too young.” 7 But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am too young.’ You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you. 8 Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you,” declares the Lord.

You have to trust the one who created you to do what He’s asking you to do.

Ephesians 2:10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

3. Don’t hold back.

There is more capability, more opportunity. The only thing stopping the growth is us. Don’t hold back.

Matthew 12: 9 Going on from that place, he went into their synagogue, 10 and a man with a shriveled hand was there. Looking for a reason to bring charges against Jesus, they asked him, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath?” 11 He said to them, “If any of you has a sheep and it falls into a pit on the Sabbath, will you not take hold of it and lift it out? 12 How much more valuable is a person than a sheep! Therefore it is lawful to do good on the Sabbath.” 13 Then he said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” So he stretched it out and it was completely restored, just as sound as the other.

You are able. He’s willing to give you whatever you need to do what he’s called you to do. You don’t have to hold back. Stretch it out. If he’s asked you to stretch he’s already prepared what you need in advance.

Connect Group Discussion Questions

  1. Do you ever think you are experiencing less than what God intended you to experience?
  2. What are some practical ways to stay connected to the vine in order to produce fruit?
  3. What is your response to “Only God knows what you are actually capable of?”
  4. What are some things that cause us to hold back and not stretch the tent sides?
  5. What are some ways you could challenge yourself to not hold back?
  6. How can it affect others when we hold back?