Archives For Blessing

Anticipation

May 26, 2013 — 1 Comment

Waiting

Anticipation is an interesting state to live in. We have all experienced it in varying levels during various stages in our lives; As a child on Christmas Eve, or a young groom/bride on their wedding night, or someone just awaiting an answer on a long awaited wish. Anticipation can be a tricky path to walk.

Sometimes, I believe, anticipation can cloud our “present”. We operate in a constant state of anticipation. We can live in it, exist in it, and in a sense, today passes us by unnoticed and untouched.

Jesus talked so much about sowing and reaping, about seasons. Each season we exist in is a building block toward tomorrow. What we can gleam from today, will propel us into tomorrow.

The Israelites never should have been wondering the desert as long as they did. They failed to exist and recognize what God was providing them today. They constantly looked either to what they “anticipated” in the future, or to what they had in the past. They did not focus on the blessing of God in the present.

Did you know that today, this very day, God desires to bless you? He is not waiting for you to accomplish something unique, or get to that plateau you had in mind before He blesses you. It’s today.

Don’t get so busy focusing on what you anticipate as the future blessing that you let today’s blessing pass you by!

Question: How do you live in a state of present versus a state of anticipation?

Joshua_and_Caleb

In the book of Numbers we read the story about Moses sending 12 spies into the promised land. If I were to ask you to name the 10 that came back with a bad report, could you? Likely not without looking it up. But, the odds are better that you could name the 2 that did: Caleb and Joshua.

Why is that? They were all named in the Bible. Quite simply, society never remembers those that don’t think big.

There are countless truths that can be extracted from Numbers 13 and 14 and I am going to take a couple posts over the next few days to look at some of those.

First, let’s jump right into the 2nd verse of Chapter 13 where God is speaking to Moses:

“Send men to spy out the land of Canaan, which I am giving to the children of Israel; from each tribe of their fathers you shall send a man, every one a leader among them.” (Emphasis added)

This is simple. The spies were entering with the foreknowledge that they will be getting this land. God declared and spoke it – and since God cannot lie, it is truth.

We too are walking with the same foreknowledge today! God has already declared victory for you!

Yet, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us! (Romans 8:37 NKJV)

And that is not even the tip of the iceberg on promises from Him! If you want more, just go back in my posts – there are plenty that we talk about.

We fast forward in Numbers 13 and the spies returned after 40 days in the land of Canaan:

27 Then they told him, and said: “We went to the land where you sent us. It truly flows with milk and honey, and this is its fruit. (Emphasis added)

The spies all agree and verbally declare that the land is good and abundant. Unfortunately, it doesn’t stop there:

28Nevertheless the people who dwell in the land are strong; the cities are fortified and very large; moreover we saw the descendants of Anak there. 29The Amalekites dwell in the land of the South; the Hittites, the Jebusites, and the Amorites dwell in the mountains; and the Canaanites dwell by the sea and along the banks of the Jordan.”

The slippery slope of self doubt and fear begins. And then, enter one of my Biblical Hero’s, Caleb to weigh in on the whole situation:

30 Then Caleb quieted the people before Moses, and said, “Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it.”

Caleb did not suggest putting together an attack plan or developing a strategy for a military campaign – he simply said, now is the time! When God puts something before us, I am convinced that the time to act is now – do not delay! We will always have a million reasons why something should wait until tomorrow – but just as Caleb declared – we must take the promised land that God is giving us now!

This is just the start of it all – look for the follow up on Saturday as we explore the remaining promises we can find in this story!

Question: Can you share a time when you acted in the courageous manner that Caleb did and saw God come through in an amazing way?

NewAndImproved

It is so refreshing to know that we have a God who desires to do something new. Not something ordinary and mundane – but something new, unique and astounding.

Read Isaiah 43 verses 16-21, I have it here in The Message translation – but read it in a few different versions:

This is what God says, the God who builds a road right through the ocean, who carves a path through pounding waves, The God who summons horses and chariots and armies— they lie down and then can’t get up; they’re snuffed out like so many candles: “Forget about what’s happened; don’t keep going over old history. Be alert, be present. I’m about to do something brand-new. It’s bursting out! Don’t you see it? There it is! I’m making a road through the desert, rivers in the badlands. Wild animals will say ‘Thank you!’ —the coyotes and the buzzards— Because I provided water in the desert, rivers through the sun-baked earth, Drinking water for the people I chose, the people I made especially for myself, a people custom-made to praise me.

I could read this again and again! No matter the situation, God desires to do something new in your life! Take special note to the first sentence – we serve a God who builds a road right through the ocean, who carves a path through the pounding waves. We serve a God who can part the seas, heal the sick and raise the dead and He desires to do a new thing with you as well!

What does the landscape around you look like? Is it a desert, a storm or are you surrounded by the pounding waves? He commands us to forget the past and BE ALEART AND PRESENT! Live in a state of expectancy for Him!

Today! Now! This moment! Don’t let it pass you by. Expect God to do something new and He will.

Question: Can you share an time when God did something new in your life?

God desires to bless you. It is as simple as that. He desires to bless you and make you a blessing to others. No need to overcomplicate it – the word declares we need to grab ahold of that promise!

One of the scriptures that I have taught on in the past starts in Psalm 67 verse 5:

5 Let the peoples praise You, O God; Let all the peoples praise You. 6 Then the earth shall yield her increase; God, our own God, shall bless us. 7 God shall bless us, And all the ends of the earth shall fear Him.

Pay particularly close attention to verse seven. Why is it that the ends of the earth shall fear Him? What is causing that fear?  What leads to it? The answer: His blessing on us. That means, His blessing must be so great that others will take notice and fear Him because of it.

I fully realize the topic of prosperity can ruffle some feathers amongst Christians – but the truth is God desires to bless you not just financially but in all areas – relationally, spiritually, health, favor amongst others and yes even money. The list goes on and on.

So how do we receive this blessing? It begins first with praise. Once we stop and praise Him, the exchange is open. You must praise Him in all areas. (Take a look at my most recent post – it all begins with worship!)

You must also declare the truth over your life! If you walk around saying “nothing good ever happens to me” than I promise you, nothing good will ever happen to you. But, if you walk around declaring God’s desire to bless you stating “I am favored and blessed by Him, the Lord of all” the blessing has no choice but to infiltrate your life!

Perhaps you don’t quite feel as though God is “blessing” you in the season that you are in right now. There are always seasons in our lives that can feel like that. Let me challenge you today to try something different. If you have never taken the Word of God and spoke it over your life and made it personal, now is the time. Take the verse above, write it out, make it personal and read it every morning. For example, I would write and read this for my self:

I, Paul, will praise the Lord! Then the earth shall yield her increase; God, my own God, shall bless me, Paul! God shall bless me, Paul, and all the ends of the earth shall fear Him!

If you take this simple step for even a week, I know (because the Word promises it) your world will start to change. Things that seemed helpless will suddenly show hope. Areas of lack will suddenly be areas of surplus. You have to trust and praise Him!

Question: Do you have a testimony you can share when you put this principle into action?