If you have absolutely no restrictions or limitations and you knew beyond the shadow of a doubt there was no way you could fail – what would be your most audacious goal?
Let me tell you a story… it’s a true story… maybe you’ve heard it before.
Fast forward seven years… It’s now December 1968. The research, testing, and preparations up to this point have been immense and not without issue but NASA believe it’s time to make a bold decision and send Apollo 8 all the way to the moon with astronauts on board. It’s the first human space flight to leave Earths orbit and enter a different orbit around the moon.
Step forward a further 7 months and it’s now 16 July 1969… a little over 8 years since President Kennedy’s challenge to put a man on the moon.
Apollo 11 astronauts Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins are once again sitting at the top of a rocket at Launch Complex 39A at the Kennedy Space Centre. Apollo 11 is a three-stage 111 metre tall rocket (363-foot) that will use its 7.5 million pounds of thrust to propel them into space and into history. As the astronauts prepare to launch Apollo 11 they narrate their procedures to space command.
At 9:32 am, the engines fire… “Houston… we have ignition.”
Space command begin the count down… “Apollo 11 Prepare for launch in T minus 10, 9, 8…”
The astronauts are anxious as the countdown continues… “3, 2, 1. We have lift off!”
Apollo 11 clears the tower and rockets into space. About 12 minutes later, the crew is in Earths orbit. After 1.5 orbits of the earth, the crew receive confirmation to begin their mission. After 3 days they enter the Lunar orbit. A day after that, on 20 July 1969, Neil Armstrong and “Buzz” Aldrin climb into the lunar module they’ve affectionately named the Eagle and they begin the descent towards the moon.
During the final seconds of descent, the Eagle’s computer is sounding alarms which is worrying for all involved. It turns out to be a simple case of the computer trying to do too many things at once.
When the lunar module finally lands on the moon there is only 30 seconds of fuel remaining. Neil Armstrong radios back to space command – “Houston, Tranquility Base here. The Eagle has landed.”
Mission control erupts in celebration as the tension breaks, and a controller tells the crew “You got a bunch of guys about to turn blue, we’re breathing again.”
With more than half a billion people watching on television, Neil Armstrong climbs down the ladder and proclaims those historic words: “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”
It’s an historic moment and an inspirational story. Without limits man threw away convention and launched into space. They did the unthinkable… a man actually walked on the moon.
There’s one key ingredient of this story that I want to bring to your attention and that is IGNITION.
To walk on the moon… a destiny beyond our greatest limitations… man put himself in a rocket. To see the very dream of walking on a moon become alive… it took IGNITION.
Matthew 19:26 says: “Jesus looked at them and said, with man this is impossible but with God all things are possible.”
Nothing is impossible for God!
Ephesians 3:20 also says: “With God’s power working in us, God can do much, much more than anything we can ask or imagine.”
They key to being limitless is God. We are human. We are limited. All things are only possible with God involved. So often we try to do things in our own strength or like Frank Sinatra… ‘my way’. That’s not how being limitless works… it’s God’s way, in His strength and with His plans. We are but flesh and blood but He is the God Almighty.
Acts 2:17-18 (NKJV) says: “And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall prophesy.”
The bible tells us that God will pour out His spirit and we will see dreams and visions. Life without limits thinks beyond normal. It dreams beyond the status quo and sees visions beyond the current reality around us. When our dreams and visions come from the God of ‘all things are possible’ they are bigger than us and bigger than impossible.
Being limitless is a nice idea, but there’s more to being limitless that just dreaming about it. You need ignition.
When you think about it… if it wasn’t for ignition the Apollo 11 rocket would have never left the ground. Without ignition there’s no movement, progress or advancement. Without ignition rockets are grounded.
Without ignition the stars are still out of reach. Without action… Limitless becomes limited.
Sometimes we look at the mountain that is before us and we think it is way too big. How can I do that? I’m just me? Or I’m not good enough. Why would God choose me to do that? There’s so many other people out there who can do this better than me? What if I fail?
We are full of excuses but why do we allow ourselves to become limited?
Neil Armstrong did not just wake up one morning and decided ‘today is the day I’m going to walk on the moon.’ Someone had a dream. Then a lot of work was required. Apparently there were 1000’s of people involved in preparation for the Apollo 11 rocket launch. When you think about it there was planning, training, manufacturing, research, testing and a massive amount of administration. The work behind the scenes would have been phenomenal. But they had a dream and they took the required steps to make it happen. The thing is they had to start somewhere and it all started with a first step.
Sometimes the vision or the dreams that God puts before us are huge. They might even seem completely impossible. We ask how on earth can I do that?
You’ve heard that saying… ‘how to you eat an elephant?’ The answer is one bite at a time.
We often get distracted by the size of the dream or vision that God puts before us but we need to take it one bite at a time. The important thing is to make sure we take that first bite. The first bite is often the hardest. It’s the ignition point. Without it nothing will occur.
Once you’ve taken the first bite, then you can take the second bites. And then the next and the next… and before you know it you’re well and truly on your way to your moon landing and the dreams and visions you have received will start progressing.
There’s often more than one elephant in your life. God sometimes gives you multiple dreams or visions and there’s also many areas of our lives such as work, family or friends which are in some ways competing priorities. However if you take a bite from each one of your elephants then often then you can eat more than 1 elephant at a time. If you break it down to the next most important task for each one of your elephants you can make a huge leap forward in your dreams and visions and several areas of your life all at once.
Another barrier to ignition is doubt.
Doubt can come from from a wide variety of places. It can be triggered by people close to you, a comment from a random stranger, something you see or hear in media, previous life experiences and sometimes it even comes from within you. Everyone experiences doubts.
It may surprise you to know that not everyone was confident the mission to the moon was going to succeed.
When Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin got in that rocket… there was a very high chance they weren’t coming back. When you think about it, the astronauts were either very brave, very stupid… or perhaps they just had the faith to believe the mission would succeed.
Which ever way you look at it there was always doubt the mission would succeed. Did you know that President Nixon had a speech prepared just in case the 1969 mission to the moon failed? I’m not just making this up… I have proof.
Here’s the speech that was prepared:
You would hope they didn’t show this speech to the astronauts or their families before the rocket launch. It’s a frightening thought but there was such a high level of doubt that the Apollo 11 mission was going to succeed that they prepared a speech to announce the failure to the world. The presidents office even spoke of their wives as “widows-to-be”. There was doubt. They prepared for it but it didn’t stop them from making the mission a reality.
It’s time to turn on the ignition and put all the doubt, fears and excuses behind us.
There is a song that has inspired me all year this year. It’s a song called ‘Limitless’ by Colton Dixon. I have listened to this song repeatedly because it has some really powerful faith building lyrics.
The bridge of Colton Dixon’s song says: “Doubt sees a mountain, no way around it, Faith sees a victory, no doubt about it. Fear sees a ceiling, hope sees the stars. Love (God) be the light inside of our hearts.”
The song is on youtube if you want to look it up here:
For us – as men and women of Faith – God is going to ask us to do things that are impossible. People will say “are you mad? That’ll never work. You’re going to fail at that for sure!”
We are taught to ask “what if we fail?” … but our God is limitless…. so shouldn’t we ask “what if we succeed?” instead?
Isaiah 40:28-31 (NLT) says: “Have you never heard? Have you never understood? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth. He never grows weak or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding. He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless. Even youths will become weak and tired, and young men will fall in exhaustion. But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.”
We can go beyond our limitations in God. Imagine what will happen if we understand the power of God and what He can do in and through us. The God who is completely without boundary, completely without limit, the very God for whom nothing is impossible is alive in us and we can overcome our own limitations through Him.
Jeremiah 29:11-13 says: “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.”
God has great plans and purposes for you. No matter who you are, no matter what you’ve done, no matter what anyone says, no matter what you think yourself – there is something incredible before you. God wants you to engage with Him… to seek Him wholeheartedly… that He may be with you and within you.
We have access to the ultimate rocket fuel…. Holy Spirit rocket fuel. God doesn’t want us sitting idle. He built us like an car… to go places. We need to fuel up on Him, switch on the ignition…. rev those engines, put the car into gear and get moving.
Isaiah 55:9 says “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
Maybe you don’t feel like you have a plan or a purpose. Maybe you haven’t yet seen the dreams or visions. Let me encourage you to ask.
In Matthew 7:7 it says: “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.”
Earlier this year I was painting our fences… all 80 metres… two coats with my Aldi spray gun. It was the most boring 4 days of my entire life. During that time I asked God ‘what is it you want me to do?’. That night I had a dream. God speaks. He hears you… He WILL speak to you. You just need to ask.
Perhaps you have dreams or visions and a clear idea of what it is you’re meant to be doing – but for whatever reason you haven’t done anything about it yet. It’s time to turn the key. Start the ignition and press the accelerator. Now is the time to take the first step.
Ignition is lighting the flame, it’s starting the engine, it’s firing up. It’s putting action to the vision, dreams, plans and purposes that God has for you.
- It’s the power of God alive in you that makes you limitless.
- If you think you have a big dream or vision… it’s time to stretch… ask God for more.
- If you don’t feel like you have a clear vision or dream ask Him to give you dreams and visions. Believe He will speak.
- If you need to do something with the dreams and visions… make a commitment to God right now that you will do something about it.
It’s time to pick up our swords, go forward in faith and be limitless in God knowing He is within us.