Category Archives: Prosperity

Moving Into The Next Season

Then God said to Noah,   “Come out of the ark, you and your wife and your sons and their wives.  Bring out every kind of living creature that is with you—the birds, the animals, and all the creatures that move along the ground—so they can multiply on the earth and be fruitful and increase in number on it.” – Genesis 8:15-17

 

If it weren’t for the ark then Noah, his family, and all of the animals would have perished in the flood.  Noah’s faith in God led him to make preparations for and to move into something that would protect him and transition him into the next season.

But when the waters receded and the ground was ready, it was time for Noah and the others to move out of the ark, and into the earth.  God had multiplication, growth and prosperity on His mind – and the ark, as important as it was for the season they’d been in, couldn’t hold them for what God was calling them into.

In the same way, we go through seasons and there’s times when we’re ‘battened down’ and ‘hiding’ in the grace of God while storms blow through our lives.  In these moments it’s easy to develop a ‘seige mentality’ – wondering where the next attack or disaster will come from.  But at it’s best a seige mentality is a maintenance mentaility – it’s not a growth mentality.  There has to be a change in our outlook, in our vision, in our faith – to move us out of our own ‘arks’ and into the promises of God.

It’s a new season for Noah, and perhaps to encourage him to take the step – God gives him a promise… that He will never destroy the whole earth by flooding it again.  He gives Noah His word that the season has absolutely changed and it won’t go back to how it was.

Noah believed God the first time, and built an ark.  How important it was that Noah believed God the second time!  Otherwise he could have found himself living out of the ark… just in case.  How many people in our world have been through a traumatic experience, and cannot transition into a new season because they’re holding on to their old ark… just in case?  That which once protected them becomes their prison.  That which once saved their life now serves to limit them.

God gives us His great and precious promises to coax us out of where we have been, so that He can bring us into a fruitful and blessed place.  That’s His intention and goal.

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God Is A Finisher!

By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work. Then God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done – Genesis 2:1-2

I’m a great starter!  I get lots of ideas for things, and have found myself on the starting line of numerous projects over the course of my life.  Unfortunately I can’t always say that I’ve also found myself crossing the finishing line.  Anyone can start something – but not everyone finishes what they start.

But God is a FINISHER.  He doesn’t leave things incomplete.  It’s absolutely against His character and nature to do so.  When he begins something, He not only intends to finish it… He WILL finish it!

This gives me great hope when I read verses like:

“Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” – Philippians 1:6

My life is a work in progress.  But the one who is working on me is unbelievably persistent!  He… just… keeps… going… until… it’s… done! 

So… if God is a FINISHER and a COMPLETER – and He’s called me to be conformed to His likeness, then I too have to get serious about finishing what I start. 

There’s a process here too – FINISHED… RESTED…. BLESSED.  When something isn’t finished, we find it hard to rest.  We keep thinking about it, it dogs us at the back of our mind.  There are many people walking around today stressed simply because of the number of half-finished things they’ve got going on.  Completion brings rest.  And rest brings blessing.  To enter into a life of rest and blessing – one of the most practical things we can do is COMPLETE things!!

Breaking Open Historic Wells

From there they continued on to Beer, the well where the LORD said to Moses, “Gather the people together and I will give them water.”  Then Israel sang this song: “Spring up, O well! Sing about it, about the well that the princes dug, that the nobles of the people sank– the nobles with scepters and staffs.” – Numbers 21:16-18 (NIV)

In their journey towards the Promised Land, the Israelites came to a place where God promised to give them water.  It was called ‘Beer’ (which in Hebrew means ‘water’) – but interestingly it doesn’t seem like there’s any water there – as God has to specifically tell Moses that He will give water to the people.  So the people sing, and the princes and nobles dig, and the water flows. 

Leadership Principles

There’s some keys in this passage for those who are leaders – as every leader in some way is a shepherd, with the responsibility of both feeding the sheep and leading them to water.  We feed them with the Word of God, but in order to water them, we must bring them into places where they encounter His power and presence.  Churches and leaders need both the Word and the Spirit working simultaneously in order for the ‘sheep’ to be healthy.  So how do we get a ‘well’ going for our people when it seems like it’s all dry?

Key 1 – Find An Historic Well

The Israelites came to a place called Beer, called water.  There may not have been any water there when they arrived, but there must have been water there at some point in the past for it to have received the name it did.  God has ordained a whole lot of different ‘wells’ for His people to drink from, but many of them have been stopped up or stopped flowing over the years.  But the water is still there, under the ground – ready to be tapped.  Some of these wells include salvation, healing, revival, worship.  When these wells get tapped then power begins to flow and the people of God get refreshed. 

Key 2 – Gather The People Together

The power of unity is well documented in the Word of God – and is an essential key if we’re going to get a well going.  The people must be gathered together, and given a common focus and plan.  Without a united group people – no well will be opened.  But when the people are together – then God’s blessing quickly comes upon the work.  We unite the people by showing them why they need the well – and what has happened historically when that well has been opened.

Key 3 – Sing To It

Worship has supernatural power to unblock wells.  One of the best ways that we can start to unblock a particular well is by choosing songs that we sing together about that well.  For example, if we want to see a healing well unblocked – then it’s important that we’re corporately singing songs about God’s healing power.  The worship not only ‘speaks’ to the situation with words of power, but worship also carries God’s transforming power to change the hearts and minds of those who worship.  Worship gets into the hearts and minds of the people.  Whatever we sing to will spring up in our midst! 

Key 4 – Get The Leaders And Nobles Digging

The final key is to get those who have visible leadership – the ‘leaders’ and ‘nobles’ – to get them ‘digging’ alongside you.  Get them committed to prayer & fasting, and to speaking and encouraging the others.  Get them investing in it. 

In Conclusion

When Israel rocked up to Beer, there was no water there.  But they left behind them a flowing well.  God is calling us to be people like that too – who come into situations where there is no life, and not only get life flowing in our time, but leave behind us a legacy for those who will follow as well. 

Convicted… but not completely

2 Chronicles 8:11 – Solomon brought up the daughter of Pharaoh out of the city of David to the house that he had built for her; for he said, My wife shall not dwell in the house of David king of Israel, because the places where the ark of Yahweh has come are holy.

Solomon is in a dilemma – he is living in Jerusalem near the Ark of the Covenant – where the very presence of God is dwelling.  He is also living with his wife, the daughter of Pharoah of Egypt.  These two will not dwell happily together – because the customs and practices of his wife are detestable to God, and the holiness of God is detestable to his wife. 

So Solomon makes a decision – he moves his wife out of the city, and thus brings about a temporary solution.  But it’s an indicator of a much bigger problem for Solomon – he had divided loyalties. 

We can only be wholehearted about something when our whole heart is united.  Hosting the presence of God in our lives will start to bring about a reaction from everything in our lives that is opposed to His presence.  Solomon tried to deal with this the quick and easy way – by separating the two.  Many Christians try the same thing – compartmentalising their lives into what is holy, and what is not.  But it ended up being the ruin of Solomon, and it will ruin us too. In our heart, our love of God must surpass every other love that we have.  Any time another love starts to take His place, we risk idolatry. 

Some would ask – what about those who are married to people who aren’t Christians?  It’s a difficult road for sure, and for that reason Paul’s advice on the subject was ‘don’t marry unbelievers’.  But if you’re already married, and you’ve got saved and your husband/wife isn’t – then you have to walk out a careful balance of continuing your ongoing commitment to your spouse, while making sure that in all things, your love for God comes first.  Don’t be discouraged – many non-Christian spouses have eventually been won over to the faith by the demonstration of love for God and love for others that their husband or wife shows. 

One thing is true – there is only one TOP place in our heart’s love.  Don’t try to share the balance – but put the One who is worthy of that place first!

The Secret To Abundance

1 Kings 17:13 – Elijah said to her, Don’t be afraid; go and do as you have said; but make me of it a little cake first, and bring it forth to me, and afterward make for you and for your son.

Elijah is told by God to go and receive hospitality from a most unlikely source – a widow in Zarephath.  He has to receive hospitality from a woman who has been through pain, in a place that is despised by Israelites. 

He asks for water and a small morsel of bread.  She gives him her vision for life – that she will make a small cake, that she and her son will eat it, and then they will die!  But God has a bigger plan for this woman and son than one more meal before death! 

The oil and flour never ran dry for this woman – and here’s the key that Elijah gave her to walk in this abundance:

1) Don’t be afraid.  Fear will hold us back from the correct action.  Anytime we do something that is motivated by fear, we make the wrong decision.  Fear and faith both act – but fear acts negatively, faith acts positively. 

2) Go and do as you said.  Get on and live your life, do the things that you need to do.  Often the will of God is not necessarily a complete shift of your life to doing something that you’ve never done before.  It’s to continue doing what you’re doing, but approach it with vision and faith. 

3) Make me a little cake first.  Make sure that the FIRST things you do are to seek first the kingdom of God.  Give the first of your abundance and energy to serving His purposes.  This woman didn’t have enough to look after herself – but the key was to give to God first. 

4) Afterwards, make a cake for you and your son.  Step 3 has to happen before step 4 can happen.  The final command that Elijah gives this woman is impossible.  But she can do steps 1-3.  The call of God for us is impossible, but we can always take the initial actions.