Pastor Franklin’s message, Follow The Star, is not just an account of the wise men finding Jesus. It’s a reminder that God places “stars” in our lives to guide us toward Him. He uses us as His light to lead others. And we are to give Him our best gifts of worship no matter where we are. What exactly does it mean to be “Starstruck”? To recognize Christ is King and follow Him!

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connection hello and welcome to kingdom

connection thank you so much for joining

us and Merry Christmas everyone I just

hope that you and your family are

blessed this Christmas season the

message today is really going to touch

you it’s an encouraging word we’re in a

series called starstruck here at the

church and God is just really using it

in a powerful way many souls have been

saying I want to encourage you to that

if you can get to one of our free chapel

locations and campuses we’re in a

wonderful time and on December the 22nd

I’ll be leading the candlelight services

and it’s amazing time bring a word and

then worship and it’s just a beautiful

time I always break my saxophone out

pull my sax out we sing some of the old

hymns and it’s a very emotional powerful

service that you will be blessed I’m

going to be leading that in-person life

on in Georgia on the 22nd and then out

in California at our Orange County

campus in the 4:00 and 6:00 p.m. service

I would love to see you there on

December the 22nd bring your whole

family it’ll be a moving experience well

let’s open up our lives and our hearts

and our ears today let’s go into a

service recorded life at free chapel let

this message speak to you and become


look with me in Matthew chapter 2

Matthew chapter 2 and I’ll begin reading

with verse 9 when they heard the King

they departed and behold the star which

they had seen in the East went before

them till it came and stood over where

the young child was and they saw the

star and rejoiced with exceeding great

joy and when they came into the house

they saw the young child with Mary his

mother fell down and worshiped him and

when they had opened their treasures

they presented gifts to him gold

frankincense and myrrh and being warned

in a dream that they should not return

to Herod they departed for their own

country a different way it says when

they saw the star that star began to

attract them and turn them to move in

the direction of where the Savior was

that star out of billions of stars

God chose one star and lit it up

especially bright so that it would get

the attention of these kings that

according to history were living in

India and that light was so bright on

that one star that God chose that they

followed that star from India to

Jerusalem and then from Jerusalem to

Bethlehem the star was bright because of

its close proximity to the Sun because

it was closer to the Sun than the other


it had a brighter shine and it was that

shining light that gave direction to the

seekers and the searchers the people who

were in other religions but when they

saw the star the star was the Travel

Guide that God would use to get them to

the Savior in the manger it had a

brighter light there was something about

it that made it stand out and popped and

made them notice it

in their minds when they finally got to

Bethlehem and they bow down in worship

in all worshiping the Savior knowing the

heaviness of the moment I’m sure in

their mind they probably were thinking

I’m so glad God put that star in my path

if God had not used that star as a

Travel Guide I would have never found

the Savior I would not be here today I

would have missed the greatest moments

of my life and it’s all because God put

a bright shining star in my path that he

used as a travel guide when I was

searching and seeking to get me to the

Savior and I thought about how that none

of us are here by accident that all of

us have been starstruck if we know Jesus

Christ that God used somebody because of

their close proximity to the Sun not the

S UN but the SOE n of God somebody some

granny some daddy some mama some brother

some sister some preacher some somebody

a colleague at work got so close to the

Son of God that their light began to

shine and it began to get our attention

that there’s something different about

that star it shines brightly there’s

something different about that person I

can’t put my finger on it and when you

were in sin and when you were lost and

some of you were on drugs and some of

you were deep in alcoholism but God in

His mercy lit up some Christian brightly

and they got your attention and God used

them as a Travel Guide to get you to the

Savior and you wouldn’t be here this

morning but their light was brighter

than other people’s they stood out in

the crowd they were your Travel Guide

you might have been on drugs you might

have been in a in a sinful life but you

noticed them maybe a colleague at work

but there was something different about


it may have been apparent it may be

someone who’s in heaven this morning but

the truth is if their light had not been

bright then nobody would have followed

them including you and found the Savior

I was thinking about how that God uses

the little things it’s not the big deals

but it’s when as a parent I want to ask

you is your light bright enough that

your children are using your life as a

Travel Guide to get to the Savior I

thought about my dad and Christmas

growing up in a pastor’s home he was a

preacher in little town in Henderson

North Carolina we passed her to church

of about a hundred people called North

Henderson Church of God and we didn’t

have a lot of people but on Christmas

Sunday and Easter we had our biggest

crowds and that would attract up to a

hundred and twenty people and I’m

telling you that little country church

look jam-packed it was the most exciting

thing we loved Christmas Sunday here’s

why we always had the glorious Christmas

play what we would do is run a steel

wire across the front of the building

and they would take bedsheets

and use clothespins to to make curtains

and then we got high-tech and got shower

rings and put them on a few years later

so we could pull the curtains like

professionals do I remember it like it

was yesterday in that little church

finally the time had come it was

Christmas and we would peep out the

curtain and every place was filled the

Pew was packed and we had never seen a

crowd like that this was big-time to us

and and we were so excited and finally

that moment came the lights went out

everything went black and that was the

Sun to the to mean kids that were too

mean to get apart on the stage the only

thing they were good for was to open the

curtain but they never got the right

message at the right time and they were

supposed to open the curtain because the

deer-like we couldn’t afford a spotlight

and they would have a deer light and

they would shoot it up on the curtain

and they were supposed to open

bonnie would open it and ultimately what

would happen is the director of the play

usually my mother would reach her hand

out and just open the curtain and the

glorious christmas play would begin and

if if you watched long enough mary and

joseph in their bathrobes holding a

plastic baby Jesus would come out and

and Joseph had a cardboard donkey that

had been cut out from a box up under his

arm because she had to have a donkey and

we couldn’t afford a real one but he

would carry it across the stage and then

was my part I always had a sheep or a

cow and I would put cotton on the sheep

and glue it to it and we would pick it

up and at some point we would move and

set it down and we had to make the sheet

no noise bad bad and somebody else would

say Moo Moo and we would move across the

stage and I’m telling you sounds so

corny and so silly but when we would get

in get into that manger scene finally

and Mary would hold the baby up and

everybody would light a candle and start

to sing in that little church silent

night holy night and it would move us

and sometimes I’d be behind the sheep

just crying and you know it’s just

something about it just touched my heart

but my favorite part of Christmas Sunday

I was just thinking about this yesterday

was when Daddy would finish with an

altar call and then he would say

everybody stay where you are and he

would walk down that little middle aisle

hardwood floors and he would go to the

back of the church and there were boxes

and boxes and boxes of little brown bags

that the Franklin family owned Saturday

had filled up with fruit and candy I can

tell you exactly what was in every bag

because we had packed a hundred and

fifty of them one orange one tangerine

one Apple one box of raisins small box

some candy canes and the best part if

you were a kid

a sneaker or a milky way and if the

tithes and offerings had been good

we might get one or both but it just

depended on how the budget had gone that

year and it’s the weirdest thing but the

thing that I remember the most his dad

would stand out in the lobby and he

would personally take a bag in his hand

because he had told us

nobody is gonna come to my church on

Christmas Sunday and not get a gift and

a hug and so he would he would cause a

traffic jam at the door but he would put

a bag of candy and fruit hug and neck

and the next one would step up and I

don’t know why that’s so impressed me as

a child i sat there and I watched him

love his congregation throw his arms

around those children and old folks and

people that were there and I they act

like he was given out diamonds and that

bag people were smiling and so happy and

to this day I was thinking about it

yesterday it was the most exciting

happiest time

his light was shining and I wouldn’t be

here today had God not used him as a

travel guide to bring me to Jesus and

then one Sunday night and Rocky Mountain

North Carolina my brother Richie

got up and he had spent all afternoon

fasting and praying all afternoon I’ve

noticed that the lunch table that he was

not there and somebody said where’s

Richie and somebody mumbled he’s fasting

again and he was fasting for me because

he knew I wasn’t living right and he got

up and he started singing at the cross

at the cross

and his light began to shine so bright

that I couldn’t stand it anymore

and even though I was sitting in the

back of the church and nobody was given

an altar call I got up out of my seat

cuz his life was the Travel Guide and it

said you got to move now and I got up

without an invitation being offered and

walked down the aisle and went to the

left side of the sanctuary and dropped

to my knees and started weeping and I

receive Jesus Christ as my savior and

I’m here today because God put some

shining bright stars in my life that led

me to the Savior I think we ought to

take a moment you got somebody that you

could put in that Sun and just put your

hands together and thank the Lord for

the shining lights where would you be so

I want to quickly come to an end here

but I want to say that God wants us to

be shiny stars there are people who are

searching and seeking what if what if I

have walked into that Sunday night

service and nobody had had a burden

nobody had got close enough to the Son

of God that that their light would shine

bright enough that it would touch me

sitting on the back seat of the church

you can be that light to your family you

can be that light to people on the job

you can be that shining star that they

become starstruck and it’s not for you

it’s not for your glory or your honor

all you are is the one pointing them to

the Savior but he’s got to use somebody

and when they got to the star then they

found that Jesus was in the stable they

were not expecting him to be in the

stable that’s why they went by Herod’s

palace they expected the king of the

universe to be in the palace but instead

they followed the star and it didn’t


to the palace it led them to the stable

what do you do when you follow the star

and it leads you to the stable what do

you do when you have a dream and you

follow Jesus and you think that all that

he’s going to do is make your life one

happy clappy exciting life where no

problems come and you follow the star

the ultimate star Jesus and you end up

in a stable sometimes we almost think

that if we’re not in the palace God’s

not with us if we’re not living the

palace life with everything coming our

way and everything going our way and

every blessing hid in our life that

somehow we must not be in the will of

God but the truth is when you follow the

real star Jesus Christ yes thank God for

the palace days and the times when

you’re living high and God is blessing

you and everything’s on a mountaintop

but I want you to not forget that

sometimes you follow the star and you

end up in a stable a couple is following

the star of marriage and they’re so

beautiful and they’re holding hands and

they’re exchanging vows and it’s

picture-perfect but a few years later

infidelity heartbreak and suddenly they

followed the star and now they’re in the

stable what do you do what do you do

when you take all that you own and you

follow the star and you prayed about it

and you start your own business but the

economy shifts and you were following

the star but you ended in the stable

what do you do when your health is gone

and you’re sick and suffering and you

end up in the stable you do what those

wise men did they begin to look for God

in the stable because I’ve come today to

preach to somebody that God is not just

there in the high days when you’re

living the palace life but you’ll find

Jesus closer and nearer and dearer to

you when you’re in the stable when

you’re going through the lowest seasons

of your life when when nothing’s going

right that’s where you’ll find you

I’m saying to some of you that the only

way that God could have ever had you

find Jesus is he had to allow you to

move from the palace to the stable

because as long as you were on top of

the world you didn’t need him but when

he allowed you to go from the palace to

the stable you can actually say lord

thank you for the stable because this is

where I found Jesus and they meant it

for my evil but God meant it for my good

and somehow God has taken a mess and

turned it into a message and a testimony

for his glory come on somebody and give

the Lord a shout of praise this is what

you do when when you follow a star and

you end up in a stable you look for God

because standing somewhere in the

shadows you’ll find Jesus and he’ll

never be closer to you you’ll never be

as close to God in the palace as you

will be in the stables of life then not

only that what amazes me is these wise

men when they got in the stable they

offered their best worship in the stable

the natural inclination would be in this

filthy damp dirty stable would be the

Rif hold your best I’m not gonna give

the gold here it doesn’t belong here

this is nasty I’m not gonna give them

frankincense and the myrrh this is

expensive worship and it shouldn’t be in

the stable it should be in the palace

I’m gonna give my best worship when

everything’s going right and I’ll give

God the glory and he’ll really find that

I love him but these wise men were wise

because they said God is in the stable

and we’re gonna give our best worship in

unpleasant circumstances what you need

to learn to do is to worship God not

just when you’re in the palace life but

when you’re in the stables of life if

you can ever learn to give the best pray

in unpleasant circumstances you will see

God move mightily when you praise him

because the praise that cost the most

counts the most they begin to worship

with expensive worship in a nasty filthy

place in life the worship that God

really looks for in your life is not

when you’re in the palace but it’s when

you’re in the stable and your heart is

broken and your life is shattered you

don’t know what the future holds but all

you know is you can look back and see

the faithfulness of God and see how that

he had stars just when you almost went

the wrong way forever a star he started

shining and it turns you back and

somehow he maneuvered all the hail meant

to destroy you with God said it’s

working for you good and you’re more

than a conqueror and I’m gonna get glory

out of this and somehow I’m gonna get

you back on your knees at the feet of

the Savior and I’m gonna raise you up

from the stable and I’m gonna do great

things in your life

and you’re going to become a bright

shining light because of what you’ve

been through that’s gonna touch your

children and your children’s children

for generations


let your sweet aroma feel

Rose of Sharon show me

how to grow in beauty and God’s eyes

fairest of 10,000

make me a reflection of your life

oh they star shine down let your love

shine through me in the night

just leave me love I’ll follow anyway

you know

let your word speak to

show me what never seen

want to be witness

can take what’s wrong and make around


tage stars shine down

let your love shine to me

one more time


I surrender all to you

just speaks life to me

show me why

witness you can take what’s wrong


a pretty stash and


legend ah

in somebody’s start9

she’s a shy girl only let your love

shine through me

in the night

I’m believing today that the light of

Jesus Christ is shining in every dark

place of your life I don’t believe

you’ve been watching this program and

listening to this message and hearing

this song today by chance jesus loves

you turn your life over to him he knows

where you are he knows what you’re going

through you may be in the stable of

addiction you may be in the stable of

pain and hurt and darkness and gods

there look for him he’s in there and he

has a miracle for you today he cares

about you and your family turn

everything over to him cast all your

cares on him pray this prayer Lord Jesus

I give you my life today I surrender

be my Savior in Jesus name Amen

I believe the star the stable and the

Savior is more real to you than he’s

ever been before and I’m praying for you

and love to hear from you so dial the

number on the screen get in touch with

us write us let us know about what has

happened to you and our closing moments

together I want to thank all of you

wonderful friends and partners who are

responding in a magnificent way to our

marketplace miracle in Haiti we are

seeing a miracle take place we’ve

already been able to send over two

hundred thousand dollars to this project

and a total of a million is what we have

committed and you are helping feed the

hungry you are providing food for life

you are being and ministering to the

poor the widows and the orphans and what

a profound difference you’re making in

that nation as we provide the miracle

marketplace thank you thank you thank

you and help us those of you who can

either pray for us or give or do both

and we promise you will use the

resources to preach the gospel and to

help those in need thank you so much

Merry Christmas everybody hope to see

you December the 22nd at our wonderful

candlelight service go online and check

it out we’ll see

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