Mega Church Pastor Talks "The Voice of More"
By Amanda Morad | November 15, 2013
Pastor Greg Surratt of Seacoast Church in Mt. Pleasant, S.C.
"Ever get the feeling you were made for more?" Senior pastor of Seacoast Church in South Carolina, Greg Surratt opened Regent University's weekly chapel service with this question on Wednesday, Nov. 13.
"That feeling can come in moments of difficulty or in moments of joy," he said. "We all catch glimpses of it, but we sink back into routine and start listening to the voice of less."
Surratt, who helped pioneer the multi-site church campus model, knows a thing or two about the power of the voice of more. As the president of the Association of Related Churches (ARC), he's helped plant more than 400 churches across the United States.
For Wednesday's message, he turned to John 10:10, which reads that Christ came "that you may have life and have it to the full."
"You were made to experience life to the full," he said, describing a life of health, confidence, purpose and destiny. "Who wouldn't want to live that life? Yet there are so many Christians who settle for less."
From this Scripture, Surratt turned to Matthew 28:18, analyzing three aspects of Jesus' last instructions to His disciples before leaving earth.
"You were made first of all to submit to the authority of Jesus, simply to believe the voice and words of Jesus above anything else," he said. That includes culture, media, friends and one's self.
"Dozens of people will tell you what you will never have or do, but Jesus won't be one of them," he said. The words of Jesus, he explained, sound more like, "you are loved, you are chosen, you have a purpose, you are forgiven."
"You were also made to participate in the strategy of Jesus," Surratt said. "You are important to His redemption plan."
He spoke of Christ's commission to make disciples: "To make disciples means that I become the voice of more," the pastor explained. "We teach people to listen for the voice of more."
He challenged the audience to think seriously about the voice they speak into others' lives: more, or less? "The voice of less says 'you can't'; 'you won't be.' The voice of more says, 'you can do it.'"
Surratt then told the story of how Seacoast helped transform the city of North Charleston. At the time, it was listed as the seventh most dangerous city in America. But when their church plant was getting off the ground there, he instructed the leaders to "go be the voice of more."
They began a mentoring program in the neighborhood and watched as the crime rate around the church dropped 70 percent. The high school mentees graduated at a rate of 87 percent, compared with the local school's 36 percent rate. Today, the area is not even on the top 100 list of most dangerous cities.
"God may very well be calling you to say, 'I'm going to live radically, to go where others won't go to make disciples,'" he encouraged.
The last part of Jesus' instructions says "I will be with you always." From that, Surratt surmised, "you were made to stand on the promises of Jesus."
"It's easy to hear the voice of more when things are going well," he explained. "But things don't always go well.... If your hope is in God, you will never be disappointed."
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