The Canvas Strategy | Take Action

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Pastor Keion Henderson is the lead pastor of The Lighthouse Church in Houston, Texas. Lighthouse is an organization that serves the body of Christ through our 5 pillars. We always ANTICIPATE a move of God in every experience, so we constantly set a great ATMOSPHERE, and we ACCEPT everyone through love. We believe the best way to impact people is by being AUTHENTIC to who we are and by taking ACTION to move everyone towards greater.

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Autogenerated Transcript

Pastor Keion (00:00):
Hey everybody. Listen, we are getting ready to cross over into the new year and I thought what is the most important message that I had for you to give you the strategy to go into the new year with expectation and tools to conquer the enemy in front of you? I want to present to you a message that I believe it’s a throwback, but I believe it’s a good one. My father taught me anything that isn’t worth saying twice. Wasn’t worth saying once. So I want to present to you a message that I wrote called The Canvas Strategy. It will show you how to ensure that 2024 is the best year of your life. Check it out.

Pastor Keion (00:56):
Welcome to another episode of Take Action. I am your host and you are my friend and I am so glad that you continue to come back. Do you know last week we had a lesson called The Power of Being a Student, the Power of Being a Student, and it was our 30th episode, 30 weeks. We’ve been doing this together week after week after week after week, and here we are starting another cycle and I got a word for you today. Now remember, I need you to go back and watch last week because last week’s message and this week’s message is a two-part series that I believe if combined will help you to make your life consistently 1% better. So I want you to go back and get the other part of that because last week and this week is designed to work together and all things work together for the good of them that love the Lord and are called according to his purpose.

Last week we talked about the power of being a student. Today I want to talk about something that maybe you’ve heard before but maybe not dug all the way into or perhaps this is your first time hearing about it. It is actually a growth strategy that will help you to get better in life is called the canvas strategy. The canvas strategy. Let me open up with a story. First of all, there was once a man named Marcus, and you can say his name a myriad of ways. Ali. Ali, you can decide how you want to say it, but he spent the better part of his life serving the mega rich. He was sort of like, what do you call it when a person, an intern, he was a career intern, never really got the wealth but was always around it, never really ascertained it, but always saw it. You ever been around that kind of person or maybe you’re that kind of person that’s like everybody else is doing good, but you’re kind like on the bottom end of that good and you’re looking at them like, I’m just as talented. I’m just as smart, and you’re trying to also figure out how to

Scale and leverage up so that way you can continue to go further faster, spend a lot of years serving people who had it but not having it himself. Sort of like David serving Saul, Saul being a king, David being a shepherd. See that dichotomy? Don’t forget, we’re talking about the canvas strategy and the story is told that he hated every minute of his job. He felt that as long as he was serving others, it meant that no one was recognizing him. He felt like as long as he was serving others that nobody was recognizing his potential. He felt like as long as he was serving others that he was behind because it’s kind of true that the assistant doesn’t necessarily make as much as the person they serve. I believe that Marcus, and let me just call some of your names. Larry, Malcolm, Keon, Jason, Lance, Steven, whoever you are, my brother, Michelle, Candace, Carissa, whoever you are, my sister, young, old, educated, not educated, famous, infamous. This is the trap of a generation that we feel listen to me, that no recognition equals dislike. I just said it so much, pastor, I hope you’re hearing me, pastor,

You have people in your church right now that think that you don’t like them because you’re not recognizing them. Listen to me, entrepreneur, you have people who work on your staff who think that just because y’all don’t go out to eat together, that you don’t like them. Listen to me, social media people, you have people right now mad at you because you didn’t like a picture and you didn’t even see it because it didn’t come up on your feet because in this generation we equate a lack of recognition to dislike. I wish I had time to dig into that, but if you grew up when I grew up, or as Anthony Hamilton said, if you come from where I’m from, coming from where I’m from, to all of you all who are on the road from A to B on the road, from Damascus to being a preacher like Paul on the road from fishing all night and not catching any fish, to being a fisher of man like Peter on the road from being born in a animal’s feeding trth, laying in the manger to sitting on the right hand of the father in the kingdom of heaven like Jesus,

The road from your beginning to your end is called process and there is usually no recognition in between time. You better hear me today. It used to be called the journey. It used to be called paying your dues. Now we call it hate, jealousy, envy. It used to be that when the rookie joined the team, he understood he had to get the water. Now the rookies make sure it’s in their contract that they get the same treatment as the veteran. Ryan Holiday describes this perfectly in his book, ego is the Enemy and I’m paraphrasing, but what he says is these are my words. His idea, his concept that it is a common attitude that transcends generations and societies, that the anger unappreciated genius is forced to do stuff that he or she doesn’t like for people that he or she doesn’t respect as he or she makes their way through life. But then he goes on to say, if you’re going to be a big deal, listen to me. If you think you’re going to be a big deal, isn’t this a small price to pay? I think this is, if you connect this to last week’s lesson and you look at this as to be continued a continuation, you will realize something that just that I stated in the last lesson, the power of being a student. Look it up on YouTube.

When you connect the two, you’ll realize that what you’re going through is actually called process that sometimes you have to be a genius. Sometimes you have to be better than the person you work for. Sometimes you have to be smarter than the person you work for. Sometimes you have to be married to the person that you are more patient than for a season and be forced to do stuff you don’t like for people who don’t respect you as you make it through life. But then if you’re going to be a big deal,

Pastor Keion (10:43):
You’re going to be amazing, if you’re going be great, then you have to say to yourself that it’s a small price to pay for my future. Could you imagine how frustrated David was? Can you imagine how frustrated he was with the fact that he knew the anointing was on him? He knew he was the next king and yet he had to serve the guy who had no oil, and y’all better hear me today. In other words, you can stunt your growth by paying too much attention to the process.

Pastor Keion (11:27):
Just have to go through it, and the truth is that the struggle that you have to endure before God makes you durable is a temporary process, but most people will lose the prize because they become disenfranchised by the illusion

Of what they’re going. Your emotions are lying to you about what you’re really experiencing. I know your degree is higher. I know that your IQ is higher. I know your experience is greater, and I know it’s difficult for you to stay underneath somebody when you think that you are superior to that idea, but there is something called the canvas stretch. I’m going to explain it in a minute. Matter of fact, no, I’m going to explain it right now. Two kings, chapter two, verse two, two men that we know very well in the scripture, Elijah and Elijah. Elijah was the old man. Elijah was the og. Elijah was the miracle worker, but there was this young Thundercat, this young gun, this young whipper snapper that was coming up from the rear and he was gaining fame and notoriety and Elijah who understands the canvas strategy takes his mantle and places it on the shoulders of another young man who understands the canvas strategy.

Elijah says to Elijah, look, I got to go. You stay here. Verse two, chapter two, two kings, the Lord is sending me to Bethel, the house of God. I got to go, Eli Ssh said, listen to these words as surely as the Lord lives and as I live, I will not leave you. In other words, you going, I’m going, you running, I’m running. Whatever you do, I’m going to do it. Wherever you go, I’m going to go, and so the Bible says that they went down to Bethel. This is the canvas strategy in action. Please hear me.

Elijah returned to the oxen. This is the canvas strategy. I’m about to explain it. He returns to his cattle, his oxen. In other words, if it was today’s time, he returned to his garage, he returned to his mansion, he returned to his closet, his possessions. That’s what his oxen was. He got to his oxen and he slaughtered them. He killed them, and then he used wood from the plow to build a fire to roast their flesh. Then he passed around the meat to the townspeople because he didn’t have time to eat it all, so he had a big barbecue, cooked all the food, gave all of the food away to all the people. They ate it, and then Elijah went with him. Elijah went with him. Why does he do that? He burns his equipment and destroys anything that he could possibly have to return to take care of because he understands from this point on that his job is to make Elijah’s job better. My question for you is have you identified anybody that it is your job to make sure that their job is easier?

Have you allowed your life to be the canvas for Elijah to paint on? Because if you look at last week’s lesson, the power of being a student, I talked about how the value of a thing is increased based on the hand that touches it, and if you would allow Elijah, your mentor, your parents, your husband, your boss, somebody you respect to paint on the canvas of your life, they have just increased your value by touching you with their hand. Psychologically though, people struggle with this concept because the lack of recognition makes us feel unappreciated. I have never in my life heard so many people talk about not being liked and not being appreciated, and I think it’s because some of us equate likes to being liked, and if you only have 50 likes, you think only 50 people like you, but what it really means is, is that most of us was too busy to be online and we text you, we love you, so we didn’t know we had to go on social media and prove it. I believe the advent of social media, mass media, 24 hour news cycles, selfies, cameras, networking sites have made us become food by the superficial likes of people we’ve never met, which makes us think that our reach is broader than it really is. Just because somebody likes a quote doesn’t mean they like you, and just because somebody doesn’t like a quote doesn’t mean that they don’t like you, but some of us, and I’m going to be a sports fanatic for a few seconds, we want to be Michael Jordan, but we don’t want to be Scotty Pippin.

I’ll do Justice League. We want to be Batman, but nobody wants to be Robin. But what you don’t recognize is without robbing ain’t no Batman, without Pippin. There are no six championships and we have to learn to be the supporting role until it’s our term to shine. Because let me tell you, Pippin was with Jordan, 91, 92, 92, 93, but when Jordan retired after those first three championships, Scotty Pippen was the star for the Chicago Bulls. 94, 95, 95, 96, the two years that the Houston Rockets won the championship, and I could have my math off somewhere in that range, but he had the team for two years because what Robin had to recognize is he still needed Batman. You have to understand that the lead needs the support and the support needs to lead in whichever role you play. You have to be comfortable. There’s a good friend of mine named Edwin Haynes. He said, what most people don’t know is they can still get to the top from the middle man, I’m helping somebody who’s listening. It’s only for 3% that when you’re out front you got to get cut by all of the thorns and those bushes. You got to get hit by those bullets when you’re on the front line, but there is safety in second. There is safety in the middle. It gives you time to develop until you are ready to be first.

Elijah wasn’t ready to call fire down from heaven like Elijah was at that stage. Lemme give you an example personally I remember and I hope this helps you. I remember one day I got an opportunity to walk with my bishop and I got a chance to see the enormity of his ministry. I remember walking down the halls, I can still see it right now. I’m looking at all of the pictures from the New York Times and from the magazines and from Time Magazine. I’m looking at pictures with presidents. I’m looking at kings and queens. I’m looking at the Georgia Dome, I’m looking at field stadiums. Woman there are loose, and I remember saying to him, man, one day I can’t wait to do all of these things, and instead of him congratulating me and saying, you can do anything, he gave me the best advice, which helped me to recognize the canvas strategy. And some people are going to miss this. Some are going to miss this because some of us are so driven to get what we want, when we want it, how we want it, we’re going to miss it. This is what he told me. This is my free advice to you. He looked at me and said, son, learn to enjoy the distance.

You will never be great until you learn to recognize and enjoy the distance between you and that which you pursue. If you step on the court and think you Michael Jordan, just because somebody told you you’re the next Jordan, if you step on the court and think you’re the next Tom Brady because somebody told you that you throw like him until you get seven rings, until you have an international ministry, until a president calls you to pray for them, until a CEO calls you and offers you shares in the company, you need to learn to enjoy the distance between you and the mark because here’s the problem with being great. You can become so great that you struggle to find a teacher. You see why last week’s lesson, the power of being a student has to be connected to this one. It is the power of the canvas strategy that you use your life to help improve somebody else’s. Why is this so hard for us to understand that when I look at my life today, I absolutely know that by the grace of God, I am here because I have helped to improve the lives of many men and women of God before God got me here and I am not done serving, which means I’m not done rising.

Even Jesus the Christ says I must work the works of the one who sent me while it this day I am here to serve and to seek and to save. He calls himself the suffering servant. I hope you’re getting help by this because so many people are failing not because they’re smart, but because they want to be first too fast. And the Bible says the first shall be last and the last shall be first. The canvas strategy is so simple that it’s hard. It’s so available, which is why it’s so rare it doesn’t discriminate, which is why it’s so hated. It works for the talented and the under talented and the only requirement for using this strategy, the canvas strategy, is humility, which is why it is so hard. It is so easy to be bitter and to despise people who have more, have more members, more money, more this, more that. And it’s so easy to be angry because somebody has a higher status or bigger office or bigger title, but if you can fight the egotistical impulse and do the work and trust the process, the possibilities for you are endless. I will end off with this quote from Ryan holiday’s book, ego is the Enemy.

Listen to me, and you should write this down. I’m going to say it once. I’m not going to repeat myself. I’m going to say it once, and the only person who’s going to get it is the person who’s disciplined enough to keep rewinding and writing it down. I’m going to hide this pearl at this point in the message, and only the people who watch long enough who can write fast enough or who can press pause until they get it all the way will get this. Are you ready? The person who clears the path ultimately controls the direction. You would be surprised at how much you can get out of life if you cleared the path for somebody instead of waiting on somebody to clear it for you. He who clears the path controls the direction just as the artist controls the canvas. Elijah approached him because of who he was and put his cloak on him, his mantle over his shoulders signifying, you know what, Elijah, I accept you. I recognize you. I know nobody else did, but all of your life, you have been ignored just so that I could recognize you. Sometimes God will leave you like the coat on Palm Sunday, tied up on the road, not written by anybody so you can be available when the right person shows up. Elijah kissed him,

Said, follow me. Elijah said, yes, sir. He kissed his parents goodbye, gave away all of his stuff, got up, walked with Elijah and ministered unto him. His first job was not to preach, but to minister to the preaching, the mantle that he put on his shoulder. If I had time, I’d tell you everything that came in Elijah’s life because of that mantle, it gave him authority, it gave him power, it gave him anointing.

And if you’re hearing me today, I want to come close and talk to you. I want you to imagine that this message is a mantle and that if you receive it in your heart, I am placing it over your shoulders. And I know that tens of people logged off deciding this wasn’t their word, but when they see you next, it’s going to be because you understood the power of being a student and you connected it with the canvas strategy. And if you don’t watch these two together, it’s going to be like watching two episodes of Game of Thrones thinking that you’re going to understand what’s happening in season five. You got to connect them.

God, in the name of Jesus, I pray for the person who’s watching this message today, you told me to quit at this moment, you’re going to do the work from here going forward. Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable and thy side, oh Lord, my strength and my redeemer, let this be bred from heaven for somebody who will feed on it until they want no more. I pray that you would open up the gift inside of them, call them blessed, help them to find their purpose, wrap them in your authority so that whatever they say will come to pass. In Jesus’ name, I pray for you. Amen. My brothers and my sisters, as you give today, I want you to sow

Into your strategy. I want you to write down everything that you want to accomplish in your life. I want you to separate them into three categories. Things you can do immediately, things you can do eventually, and things that will be done down the line. One week, one month, one year, three to five years, 10 years, split it up. I want you to put your plan on the trajectory in the life because if you don’t plan your life, you’re going to plan to fail. And I want you to get a gift out that scares you, one that scares you, one that makes you nervous, not that comfortable gift that you give every Tuesday. I want you to get one that scares the light out of of you, and I want you to say, Lord, I am planting this seed into my destiny. God, I pray that as they give that you would open up the windows of heaven, pour them out of blessing. They don’t have room enough to receive, and Jesus’ name we pray. Amen. I love you, my brother. I love you, my sister. I’ll see you next week on take action next week. Make sure you bring somebody with you. I love you.

Hey everybody. My name is Pastor Keon Henderson. I am the founder of an organization called Take Action. Now. People are always direct messaging me and texting me and saying, pastor, what are you doing? How can I be a part of what you’re doing? And I know everybody doesn’t want to be a part of the local church, but what if I told you I had a way for you to partner with me so that we can affect change throughout the world? Hence, take action now. A 5 0 1 C3 nonprofit organization committed to advancing individual agency and social progress by protecting, strengthening and uplifting the underserved and disenfranchised throughout the world. We’re doing humanitarian things, teaching entrepreneurism, teaching home ownership and institutional inequities, cultural deficits. We have our ear to the ground and we need your help to make a difference, whether it is making a sizable donation to the estate of a young woman who lost her battle with cancer via the internet, and we were able to make a difference there.

Or whether it is in a underserved community in the Caribbean islands where the children were playing amidst rocks and glass, and we came in and broke ground recently on the park so that athletes and cheerleaders and young people in that community can have a safe place to stir up the gift inside of them. Whether it is paying the utility bills in cold climates for seniors, or just helping basketball players get the proper uniforms of football players. It’s just us making a difference through financial literacy and technological empowerment and mentoring services. This is what we do, and all I’m asking you to do is become a partner with me right now, and I want you to go visit Take action Don’t put off for tomorrow what you can do today.