“When defeat comes, accept it as a signal that your plans are not sound, rebuild those plans, and set sail once more toward your coveted goal.” Napoleon Hill

John 2:19-22New International Version (NIV)

19 Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.”

20 They replied, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?” 21 But the temple he had spoken of was his body. 22 After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said. Then they believed the scripture and the words that Jesus had spoken.

Forward Thinkers, we can’t control what happens to us in life but we can control how we respond to the things that happen in life.

Jesus says you can destroy me and temporarily it may look as if I’m defeated; but in 3 days I will rebuild what you thought you had destroyed.

Forward Thinkers, what the devil meant for bad, God will turn around for our good.

This week I was ministering to a family involved in a shooting of 4 teens last Sunday in an apartment complex off FM 1960. This family is one of several families that have unfortunately become the victims of senseless violence in our city. Because of this act of violence, a 16-year-old little girl is in the hospital fighting for her life due to shots to the head and her 15-year-old best friend told me that because of this shooting, she thinks life is hopeless and she has lost hope in humanity, and maybe even God.

Forward Thinkers, my response to her was, “I’m sorry you’ve had to deal with such difficult events this early in your life but I promise you I’m going to fight for you, your generation, and this community and together, we will rebuild hope.”

Forward Thinkers, we must remember there is nothing too hard for God and we can’t forget Jesus prophesied we would do even greater things. So let’s stand in agreement and declare, “Let’s go rebuild it.” Let’s go rebuild it together.

Forward Thinkers, in the bible, Nehemiah realized and accepted the reality that he had a call on his life to rebuild his community. I wonder how many Forward Thinkers sense the call of Nehemiah to leave their comfort zone and go rebuild their communities.

Nehemiah 2:2-5 (NIV)

2 so the king asked me, “Why does your face look so sad when you are not ill? This can be nothing but sadness of heart.”

I was very much afraid, 3 but I said to the king, “May the king live forever! Why should my face not look sad when the city where my ancestors are buried lies in ruins, and its gates have been destroyed by fire?”

4 The king said to me, “What is it you want?”

Then I prayed to the God of heaven, 5 and I answered the king, “If it pleases the king and if your servant has found favor in his sight, let him send me to the city in Judah where my ancestors are buried so that I can rebuild it.”

Forward Thinkers, Nehemiah fought for the underdog to have the opportunity to reach their full potential. We must go and fight the good fight of faith and rebuild our communities. Faith without works is dead. Let’s release our faith and go rebuild.

When God elects you, it’s to meet the needs of others; not to fulfill your own needs. And when we elect politicians and pastors, their role is to be servants of the people. But we have turned servants into superstars and today, nobody is going into the broken places to serve and rebuild.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Don’t chase the cash; chase the call. And don’t look to be famous; but look to be faithful.

Forward Thinkers, Jesus demanded justice for his people during his days of ministry. Today we live in dark days of racial injustice in America and the verdicts of Cosby and Castillo, the shooter of 16-year-old Nijua still free, 20-year-old Shapammala missing since May 21 while law enforcement is being passive investigating her disappearance. I’ve decided we can’t wait on a broken system. We must go and rebuild hope in the midst of it all.

Many see the need and many see the negative conditions but refuse to answer the call and go rebuild.

Forward Thinkers, at a Pastors meeting this week with Pastors from across the country, I boldly declared I believe I am called to guide the underdog, the broken, and the forgotten into their full potential just like the earthly call of Jesus. And I believe my church is a place where people can go and rebuild their lives.

The bible talks about a generation that does not know the Lord and if you watch the local news, you can see the walls are down in our communities. We are at risk daily with 10-month-old babies being killed and men in wheelchairs being shot to death.

Forward Thinkers, the church can’t remain silent or stuck inside our nice buildings. We must go into the heart of the problems and rebuild our people.

Forward Thinkers, our people are daily faced with crime, drugs, gangs, race issues, police brutality, money problems, broken families, broken school systems, broken lives, and broken dreams which have produced broken communities.

We are at war and its time Fathers answered the call to rebuild our families, churches, and communities. Men, victory depends on us stepping up and rebuilding the man in the mirror first.

God is waiting to pour out the FOG (Favor of God) on all those who are willing to answer the call and go rebuild.

Forward Thinkers, we must do more than just talk about rebuilding. We must get engaged in our communities. In the month of May we had the Black Male Summit where we encouraged young men of color and connected them with mentors. This month we hosted the Houston Black Real Estate Association helping families find home ownership, and next month we will host a Job Fair for people with issues in their past to find jobs. No time to play church; it’s time to be the church and go rebuild our people.

Forward Thinkers, rebuilding will drive you to do more than you’ve ever done before. Rebuilding will keep you up at night dreaming of creating a better world for others to live in.

Forward Thinkers, rebuilding will push the best out of you and I must warn you, rebuilding will also bring challenges and critics out against you.

Forward Thinkers, in conclusion, there was a man on the side of the road dying. Several people, including church people, passed over him; but one Good Samaritan stopped and cared for him and rebuilt the man’s hope and future. Jesus tells us in Luke 10:37 to go and do likewise.

Forward Thinkers, if it was important to Jesus, it should be important to His church.

Forward Thinkers, if Jesus did it and we’re Christ-like, we should also be doing it.

Forward Thinkers, Jesus rebuilt so we should go and rebuild also.

Pastor E. A. Deckard is the Senior Pastor/Founder of the Green House International Church located, in both Houston, Texas, and the Woodlands, Texas. Pastor Deckard is also the Co-Founder of the No More Bloodshed Movement. To contact Pastor Deckard for speaking engagements contact him at pr.ghic@gmail.com, follow him on Facebook, Instagram and Periscope @ Pastor E A Deckard or the church website www.ghic.net.