Author Archives: Brandon

The Right Goal

Today is January 2!  Happy 2019 and I pray God’s richest blessing over you in this new year.  I pray it is a year where you know God more than ever, find freedom in ways your soul longs for, discover your purpose, and leverage all of it to make a difference in this world.  

Every new year people start new years resolutions and goal.  All of which are good and I do myself.  I personally use the Full Focus Journal by Michael Hyatt.  It is an amazing tool designed to help you accomplish more.  I write S.M.A.R.T.E.R. goals.  If you want to know more message me in the comments.

Every year I start a new habit and have at least one spiritual goal.  One year it was to spend 15 minutes a day in prayer, one year was to read through the Bible in a year, and this year is to do an extended fast.  I want to encourage you to do something new this year to grow your relationship with Jesus.  I would encourage you to make it about prayer.  Whether you pray everyday for 3 hours or once a month for 15 seconds, I would just say wherever you are in your prayer life increase it! Prayer is not about religious reterique or earning anything.  God will not love you more if you pray more or love you less if you pray less, but you will know Him more when you pray conversationally more. 

Luke 5:15 But despite Jesus’ instructions, the report of his power spread even faster, and vast crowds came to hear him preach and to be healed of their diseases. 16 But Jesus often withdrew to the wilderness for prayer.

As Jesus ministry of only 3 years, which by the way if you think you have pressure think about this.  Jesus had 3 1/2 years to convince the world and His brothers that He was God, conceived to a virgin, and the only way to heaven.  If you have a brother, what would it take for your brother to convince you they were God. You would think He would have 40 years, but no just 3.  That is pressure!  In the midst of the pressure, Jesus often to left the fame, growing influence, and need to show the world who He was… to pray.  He know prayer was His lifeline!  It is also ours.  The Jesus who knew the Father for billions of years often got away to talk with His Father.

If you feel pressure, overwhelmed, lost, confused, unsure of where to God, needing to make a decision… Go to the Father God who wants the best for you!  It is not about praying for an hour as much as it is about always being in a posture of prayer.  So today, go pray.  Not big fancy words, not even clean religious words.  Go talk to your Dad, ask for wisdom, ask for understanding, ask for a new heart, ask what He wants for you in this year.  Then listen and wait!

Helping People Live a Better Story

Brandon Sereg
@brandonsereg
www.thevibrant.church

New Discipline

Along with this new word for the year I start a new discipline every year. The last few years have been work out 6 days a week, read a book a week, get up at 5:30 am, and read through the Bible in a year.  Everyone of these were a struggle and were not easy to start.  I am not a disciplined person naturally, ask my dad and he could talk for days about my lack of disciple growing up.

2 Corinthians 9:24 Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! 25 All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. 26 So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. 27 I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. 

What is my prize I am trying to win? I want to walk in closer fellowship with Jesus every year. I want to die married to the woman I am married to.  I want my kids to know God and serve Him with all they are.  I want to fulfill my purpose I was created for.  I want my character and integrity to be as strong behind closed door as in public.  I want to make disciples that do the same as I do.  All of these things are HUGE, and so far beyond what I can do in my own strength.  JESUS IN ME IS STRONGER THAN THE WRONG DESIRES IN ME.  So daily I submit to Jesus keeping my eyes on the prize to finish the race with purpose in every step.

This devotional is a little shorter so you can spend the extra time doing the following. I challenge you to get alone with God and ask Him to give you a word for this new year.  I challenge you start a new discipline that will help you finish the race.  GO DO IT NOW!!!  God has great plans for you this new year, go and seek Him in what they are! REMEMBER GOD IS NOT LOOKING FOR SACRIFICE BUT OBEDIENCE!

Helping People Live a Better Story

Brandon Sereg

Power of Purpose

This Monday, I went to a Starbucks and bought coffee for the two people behind me in line.  They were pleasantly surprised at their free coffee.  We talked about their journey in Medical School and the stress of picking where they were headed in medicine.  Their pick determines their residency and if they decide to change later they will start over in residency.  They were both in long term relationships.  

I started talking about moving to south Florida to start a church.  They told me they went to church when they were home with their parents but struggled to find a church here.  They asked me why I was planting a church here.  I told them I am planting a church to reach people who do not go to church.  Their response was perfect: “why would someone who doesn’t want to go to church go to yours?”

I told them 3 reasons: 1. People dont need religion but to know God, like really know Him 2. People know they need friends 3. People need purpose

They shared with me how people who eat right and have purpose live better and healthier than anyone else.  It is amazing how purpose impacts our bodies. I shared with them how my vision is to have a church where it is common for people to have a purpose filled burden birth in conviction from God’s presence.  Then they use that purpose to make a difference in someone else’s life.  They were completely intrigued and couldn’t believe someone would move here to make that happen.  

Ephesians 2:10 For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

Matthew 25:34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the Kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry, and you fed me. I was thirsty, and you gave me a drink. I was a stranger, and you invited me into your home. 36 I was naked, and you gave me clothing. I was sick, and you cared for me. I was in prison, and you visited me.’

37 “Then these righteous ones will reply, ‘Lord, when did we ever see you hungry and feed you? Or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 Or a stranger and show you hospitality? Or naked and give you clothing? 39 When did we ever see you sick or in prison and visit you?’

40 “And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me!’

God has a purpose that He wants to birth in your to make a difference in the life of someone else.  I caring for others and showing generosity, you will find life to the fullest!  So today get in God’s presence and find purpose.  Let that purpose lead you to help someone live a better story!

Helping People Live a Better Story

Brandon Sereg
www.thevibrant.church

I Love Jesus but hate church…

That was the story of my senior year.  I had an encounter with Jesus the summer before that changed my life. Before then I didn’t believe in Jesus or like church. But the summer of 2003, I met Jesus and He changed my life.  My prayer life was real and God was speaking to me.  The Bible that bored me was now alive.  My burden for my lost friends was deep.  Yet when I brought them to church, they didn’t want to come back and neither did I!  

I loved Jesus and hated church.That year God called me to be a pastor in a church and I was so confused.  I reluctantly said yes.  I thought church was a building and a way of doing ministry.  I was so wrong.  You see I loved people who went to church but did not see people as the church.  Then I came across this verse:

Matthew 16:18 Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means ‘rock’), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven. Whatever you forbid on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be permitted in heaven.”

God began to show me that the Church was actually people and not a building. These people were powerful and carried Kingdom authority. God started to change my heart toward the church.  I saw God was calling me to lead the church (the people) to advance the kingdom of God into enemy territory and together we had guaranteed victory!  Then I began to love Jesus even more and love the church. 

So do you love Jesus? I am not asking if you read the Bible or pray… Do you love (the verb not the feeling) Jesus? By the way action evokes feelings.  If I cut you off in traffic it will evoke a feeling.  I am talking do you with your whole being worship, follow, and obey Jesus? If not I pray you experience Jesus the way I did 15 years ago! I pray your heart would not grow cold but would burn with love for the Savior who purchased your freedom! Worship Him and Serve Him. He is worthy of nothing less!

Do you love the church? Not the building, not the style, not your denomination, not your music preferences, not your preaching preferences… Do you love God’s bride?  If you came to me and said I like you but not your wife, we couldn’t be friends.  Is my wife perfect? Not at all!  Is God’s bride perfect?  Far from! Jesus gave His life for His bride and we are called to love her and serve her.  Remember action evokes feelings.  Where you spend your money and your time, there your love will be.  Love is a verb! Give to your church and serve her and your love for her will grow!

Helping People Live a Better Story

Brandon Sereg

Make a Difference

Many wealthy men when they get older start giving money away in philanthropy.  They spend their lives building wealth and then they begin to give it away.  Maslow was a famous phycologist that says there are 6 layers to the hierarchy of needs. First come things like food, shelter, and warmth.  Second is safety and security.  I will skip a couple layer and get to the last one.  The last one is transcendence. Maslow did not include this one originally.  Transcendence is the desire to be apart of something bigger than ourselves.  It is deep in us to make a difference in someone else’s life.  

I recently moved and I got a new barber.  He shared with me how he went out with a young man to be a blessing to the homeless.  He had a flashlight and some clippers and get several men a haircut. The barber is really good.  So they got a great haircut!  I know churches that give free oil changes for single moms.  I know people who disciple middle schoolers.  They are the real heros!

You see Maslow discovered what God spoke thousands of years before:

Ephesians 2:10  For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

A masterpiece is a piece of art that is considered among the best of an artist’s career.  So the God who created the artist has another standard of masterpiece.  Have you seen a sunset lately?  The mountains or ocean?  God says you are His masterpiece. We live in a world that says look at your checking account, your car, or position to find your value.  God says find you value in that He considers you a masterpiece!  He prepared for you in advance good things to do.  These things he has planned are matters of transcendance.  They are to help other people live a better story.  It is to lay down the way of this world that is self gain and self identity. 

So what will you do this week to help someone else live a better story?  What will you give yourself to really make a difference?  It all comes down to serving others.  You have a unique personality and a unique gift set.  I will never give a haircut, sing over a microphone, or fix your car.  It is not my gift.  If you want to grow as a leader, need someone to preach, or fix something in your house I am your guy

So what is your gift set? What is your personality?  A couple resources I recommend is Strength Finders for gift set. Also Meyers Briggs is great for a personality assessment.  These and many others like them are great ways for find how you can “Make a Difference.”

Helping People Live a Better Story

Brandon Sereg
www.thevibrant.church

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