April 5, 2020 – Pastor Carter Conlon – Times Square Church

Finding Your Voice in the Storm

now tonight i have a very simple word i

want to share with you and uh it’s a

long title though it’s here’s the title

of the word i know who you are

do you know who you will be

i know who you are

do you know who you will be if you go to

the book of john please chapter 1 and

we’re going to start there gospel of


chapter 1

and i’m going to pray first and i’m

going to start reading it verse 40 to 42

then verse 45 to 51 father i want to

thank you again tonight god

that every time we open your word

the promise is that the entrance of your


brings light

so tonight god would you would you just

help us

to open the door everyone who’s


to open the door to allow your words to

enter our hearts and our minds

and our spirit and become part of our


help us lord to get beyond just learning

and to actually learn to begin to

experience you through the promises of

your word

god almighty

i thank you that you’re going to do

something profound and powerful tonight

i bring my life to you one more time and

ask you to take this little life and

just make the words that i speak bigger

than anything i am god help me

that i may in turn help somebody tonight

who’s listening

and i thank you for it

in jesus name


i know who you are

do you know who you will be

i’m thinking i’m talking tonight to

people that i spend time throughout the

day reading the prayer requests that

come into times square church and it’s

time to pray.org and i

i look at them and everyone who writes

in you seem to be keenly aware

of who you are you’re depressed you’re


your family is

is disheveled

you’re struggling in your mind whatever

the situation is you’re fighting a

besetting sin you feel worthless you see

i know who you are just by by reading

uh the prayer requests that you send in

these this seems to be in some cases

it’s an all-consuming battle that’s

going on in your life it’s affecting

everything that you are and everything

that’s around you

but my question to you tonight

is do you know

who you will be now let me explain this

as we begin to read

john chapter 1

beginning at

verse 40.

one of the two who heard john speak

and followed him was andrew simon

peter’s brother

he first found his own brother simon and

said to him we found the messiah which

is translated to christ now this is

incredible i mean this this would be i

don’t know if there’s any other thing in

the world that would actually compare to

it we’ve we found the messiah this was

the promise for the people of god of

that season this is what they lived for

this was their all in all

it’s like somebody ran into the

sanctuary tonight and said jesus has

returned he’s in the parking lot it

would be

bad it would be that profound come out

and see him

and so

he brought him to jesus

now when jesus looked at him he said

you are

simon the son of jonah

you shall be

called cephas

which is translated

a stone

and so my point is real simple tonight

when we first encounter jesus we are

something but if we have an honest face

to face encounter with the son of god

the promise is that we shall be

something else

you you can’t have an encounter with

jesus and stay the same way you are

there is a change that happens inside

the heart

now let’s continue on verse 45.

now philip found nathanael and said to

him we have found him of whom moses and

the law and also the prophets wrote

jesus of nazareth the son of joseph

verse 46

and nathanael said to him can anything

good come out of nazareth

philip said to him come and see

jesus saw nathanael coming towards him

and said to him behold an israelite

indeed in whom is no deceit

nathanael said to him how do you know me

now nathanael obviously knew he was

essentially at his core an honest man

and he’s talking to the son of god now

says how’s it how do you know me

and jesus answered and said before

philip called you

when you were under the fig tree

i saw you

and i don’t i don’t understand the

fullness of that particular statement

something was something

was in the heart of nathanael when he

was under the fig tree as it was

that led him to an understanding that

only the son of god could have known

that i was there and what i was thinking

perhaps he felt all alone like some of

you are are feeling tonight that have

written in your prayer request and

you’re lonely maybe nathaniel just

felt alone and he was all by himself i

don’t know but the point is that even

though he might have been alone in that

place in his life jesus saw him

and i want you to know tonight those

that are online and you feel alone in

your room and your car and your home

your heart and your life

jesus sees you there

you’re not hidden from him

and he looks at you lovingly and he

looks at you longingly he’s always

wanted fellowship with you

verse 49 says nathanael answered and

said to him rabbi you are the son of god

you’re the king of israel we always like

to think that peter was the first one

who got that revelation it was actually

nathanael you remember when

after all the seasons of traveling and

seeing the dead rays and walking on

water he finally said to his disciples

who do you say that i am and peter said

you’re the christ you’re the son of the

living god and and we always say wow and

even jesus said only the father could

have revealed that to you but nathanael

had that revelation

way before peter and right in the

beginning that he was the son of god and

the king of israel why did he have that


he had it because he had a an honest


and if you and i are willing to approach

the son of god with an honest heart

something happens to us

there’s an i7 anointing that is given to

us and we begin to see first of all who

it is that we are talking to

and jesus answered and said to him in

verse 50

because i said to you i saw you under

the fig tree do you believe

you will see greater things than these

and he said to him most assuredly i say

to you hereafter you will see heaven

open and the angels of god ascending and

descending upon the son of man in other

words you will begin to understand

the power that has been given to me the

access to the throne of god the power of

heaven that is in my hands and you will

begin to understand that i am

the son of god

i’m able to do anything that i say

i can do and i can do in you and through

you anything that you will open your

heart and let me do

there’s a there’s a vision there’s a

revelation that’s given to people who

don’t approach god with a deceitful

heart a deplicitous heart

the reason that so many sit and languish

in the church throughout the ages is

because many people come to christ with

terms and conditions or maybe a feigned

dedication may i put it that like i’m

all in but only you know in reality it’s

only to this point and no farther and

god knows it because there’s a there’s a

there’s a guile in the sense the

original king james says in israel in

whom there is no guile in other words no


you’re not saying one thing and meaning

another you’re actually nathaniel you’re

an honest man and because you’re an

honest man i can speak to you and you

will in your heart

give an honest assessment

of the words that i speak before you

actually go

into the battle and begin to walk with

me and you will understand what i’m

saying you’ll understand where it is i’m

leading you to go and you will also see

the power the exceeding greatness of the

power that is available to those who

walk with me with an honest heart and a

truthful heart

now in the new testament second

corinthians chapter 5 and verse

17 one of my favorite verses in all of

the bible

it says therefore

if anyone is in christ

he is a new creation

old things have passed away

behold all things have become new if

christ has come to you

if you and i are willing to come to

christ with an honest heart this

incredible promise this is what actually

this is the promise that actually won me

to christ in the first place

over 40 years ago

when the person who was sharing christ

with me told me this verse that if you

open your heart to jesus christ

if you honestly receive him as your lord

and savior you will become

a new creation

you the old things that have had power

in your life the old things that have

governed your future the old things that


as we prayed for the old habits the old

things that can’t you can’t put away

will suddenly lose their power lose

their hold

and all things

inside of you will become new

you’ll be in effect born again you’ll be

given a new life

you’ll have a new future the promise

that was revealed to the prophets in the

old testament

is that god said i’ll give you a new


a new mind and a new spirit

you’ll be born again the old things in

your life

will pass away

and all things will become new and i

remember thinking in my heart when that

was first shared with me at the age of

24 god is it possible

because i i seemingly can’t escape

the boundaries that are all around me

the boundaries that were placed around

me by other people

the boundaries that that i perceive

about my own life and and what it will

or won’t amount to

the things that i feel i can do the

things that i feel i can’t do the things

that are really defining my present

and and paving away a very

confusing way for my future is it

possible that i can actually become a

new creation

and i remember meditating on this and

thinking about it and then i went into

the gospel of john

and i read the gospel of john for myself

and i prayed this prayer i said jesus if

if this is true

if i can be forgiven and if i i can’t


a new future if i can be made into a

different person i don’t like the person

i’m becoming i don’t like the way i

treat others i don’t like the amount

that i’m drinking i don’t like the

thoughts in my mind

i i have a sense that i’m going on a

downward trajectory and it’s just going

to get worse in the future and i seem to

be powerless to change and powerless to

stop i’m i’m being dragged into this

darkness and i can’t stop myself from

going there

jesus could it be true that i could have

a new life

and i read the gospel of john as an

unsaved man and i said show me just show

me but i saw something when i read the

gospel of john

that this life

is contingent

on one condition that when i come to

christ as my savior i don’t play games

with him

i give him my whole heart as much as i’m

able i give him my whole life and i

receive his word as truth and the guide

for my life from this day forward i saw

something that nobody ever taught me i

read it in the word of god that not only

will jesus if i turn to him not only

would he wash away my my sin not only

would he guarantee me an eternity in


but his blood had purchased me and my

life was no longer my own i now belong

to the son of god and he had the right

to my future you see before my future

can change i have to give the rights to

my future to the son of god

that’s what it was about nathanael he

was an honest man and i had an honest

assessment in a sense of myself and came

to an honest conclusion about what was

required to experience the the fullness

in a sense of the salvation that god was

setting before me i read in the book of

john that not only would he come to give

me eternal life but he would give me an

abundant life he would give me a reason

to live on the earth he would take me

out of the mediocrity of my present

trajectory and give me something that

could not only satisfy my heart but

would bring glory to his name as well

and bring others out of darkness and

into the same freedom that i know

i knew my life would never be the same

again if i if i yielded to the son of

god my life would never be the same


and i remember stopping on the side of

the road may 12 1978 and here was my


oh jesus if what this man has told me is

the truth now this is the context of

having read the gospel of john and

having an understanding of what is

required if it’s true that i can be

forgiven and have a new life

then i open my heart and i invite you

into my life to be my lord and my savior

and that was it that was my prayer

i didn’t feel a thing a lot of people

talk about the fuzzies they get or

whatever it is when they pray

at that moment in their journey with

finding god then but i i didn’t feel a

thing nothing i i just put my car in

drive and i went to work i worked my

shift and i went home and i went to bed

not feeling any different but the next

morning as god lives the next morning

i woke up and when my feet touched the


i knew i was a different man

something had happened

inside of my life if any man is in


may i put it this way if christ is in

any man or woman

that person becomes a new creation

the old things in their life

are passed away behold all things have

become new the old path will try to hang

on for a little while the old path will

try to con convince you that it’s still

alive but it’s not it has passed away

it’s dead it no longer has the right

to your future and all things are become

new so how do we experience these all

things and these new things you know

sometimes we we want it we want it


and and as as peter did in the initially

at least he tried to he tried to do it

in his own strength he tried to follow

god in his own strength and and we do

that don’t we i did it

some of you online tonight you’re doing

it right now and others in the century

you tried that

and some go a long distance but

eventually we all failed because this

kingdom you can’t walk in this kingdom

by natural human strength or wisdom

it’s not by might it’s not by power

but it’s by my spirit says the lord

in first samuel chapter 10 i’m just

going to read it to you verses 5 to 7

now samuel saul has just been anointed

king he’s going to be the king over

israel and samuel the prophet speaking

for god

gives him a word about what will give

him the strength to become the man that

he’s called to be now we all know saul

didn’t quite walk this out the way he

should have but he was given every

opportunity to do this this was the

beginning of his his ministry as it was

verse 5 of first samuel chapter 10

he says

after that you shall come to the hill of

god where the philistine garrison is

and it will happen when you’ve come to

the city you will meet a group of

prophets coming down from the high place

with a stringed instrument a tambourine

a flute and a harp before them and they

will be prophesying well that’s that’s

in a sense what happened to you tonight

those that are listening online

you come into this prayer meeting and

you’ve got a guy with a guitar a

stringed instrument you’ve got somebody

else with a keyboard you got somebody

with a drum set and they’re playing and

they’re singing and now i’m prophesying

to you

about what god will do in your life if

you will yield your life to him so

you’re actually experiencing the same

thing that saul did

then the spirit of the lord will come

upon you

hallelujah you talk about why we say

stay and pray why we say open your heart

to god give up trying to win this battle

in your own strength give up trying to

get out of this prison let god open the

door and let you out

give up trying to be strong in your own

strength give up trying to formulate the

plans of your own life and and stretch

your hands out and yield your life to

the son of god who can’t and never will

fail you then he said the spirit of the

lord will come upon you this is why we

are believing that through these connect

and fellowship groups there’s going to

be a spiritual awakening in this

generation at least you know we will do

our part we’re not the only players in

town there’s other churches other places

other people praying and god’s going to

bring it all together in one and i’m i

see in my spirit homes igniting all over

the world

i see the fire of god burning not in big

buildings no longer in mega churches but

the fire of god burning in homes men and

women coming alive in god the young and

the old the rich the poor

prophesying that means speaking in

unison with god speaking the things that

god is speaking given an understanding

like nathanael of the work and the word

and the will and the ways of god and

seeing the incredible power that’s

available to walk in this newness of

life that we are called to in christ


the spirit of the lord will come upon

you and you will prophesy with them and

be turned into another man that’s

exactly what happened on the day of

pentecost the spirit of the lord came

upon 120

failures that had gathered in an upper

room and when they came out of the upper

room and went into the marketplace what

were they doing the spirit of the lord

had come upon them and they were

speaking in unison with god about the

wonderful works that god had done is

doing and is preparing to do

they were simply walking and speaking in

unison with god and they had this

incredible vision like nathanael of the

power of god and the ability of god

to do things that can’t be done by

ordinary men and women with any amount

of ordinary strength or natural wisdom

and let it be he says in verse 7 when

these signs come to you that you do as

occasion demands for god is with you and

when you have begun to prophesy when you

are in agreement with god when you are

believing that you are what god says you

are when you are believing that you’re

going where god says you’re going when

you’re believing that you have the power

to do what god says you will do

when all of these things come into your

life then as god leads you go through

that door

because god is now with you

the old things have passed away and all

things have become new i know what you

are but do you know what you will be

praise be to god

you will not be as you are when you open

your heart to jesus christ you will be

turned into another man another woman

young or old it doesn’t matter and you

will become the person that god intended

you to be right from the womb

hallelujah to the lamb of god glory

glory glory glory to the name of jesus

hallelujah hallelujah

so jesus encounters you or you encounter

him tonight and he says i know who you

are this is who you are but this is who

you will be

praise be to god

and the holy spirit will show you

he’ll guide you line by line brick by

brick step by step