I was thinking about all of you viewers today and realized I had not reached out to you in a few weeks! The time has flown by and I have missed you! I was carefully contemplating and considering what I should write to you about and the word, ‘promise’ was the first thing that came to mind. I am going to ask you to turn your thinking cap on for a moment and indulge me for a bit. When you think of the word ‘promise’, what does that word mean to you?
When I think of the word ‘promise’, I think of the Lord and His promises He intends to keep and bless me with. I was inspired to write about this spiritual topic after watching ‘In Touch’ with Dr. Charles Stanley. Dr. Stanley made a few really good points that I had caught. First, he mentioned that most believers, meaning those that believe the Lord Jesus Christ is their personal savior, believe that all the promises listed in the bible were for them. I was one of the statistics, I too had believed this. I was astounded to learn that there are promises that are intended for us that believe and there are promises that are designed for a certain person at a certain time. He had alluded to and mentioned, for example, the promise God gave Abraham and Sarah with a son at the ripe, old age of 90. In today’s world, it is highly unlikely that a woman would bare a child at the age of 90. Yet, to the contrary, there are two books of the bible that specifically discuss the promises of the Lord that are intended for us today, both books Psalms and Proverbs to mention a couple. If you are looking to be encouraged and reminded of what those are, these two books are an excellent reference point.
Secondly he mentioned, that there are believers that understand the meaning behind promise, but their hope may be deferred, they might actually have casted doubt on the notion that God’s promises are for them. You might be thinking if God is God and he truly intends to keep his word, then why might one even cast a shadow of doubt that God would deliver His promise unto them? The answer to that is simple, life’s situations happen and sometimes these situations are enough to make us down and can be enough for us to cast doubt in our own life, our abilities, our thoughts, and even cast doubt in our God. It is important that you understand the consequences of the word doubt so that you can understand what it means to believe and to believe in God’s promises for you. Doubt is the opposite of believe, it is indicative of the word ‘disbelief’, in other words disapproving, not believing, not trusting, and not receiving. If you doubt someone, chances are you do not trust them or what they say, you may not even be in a mental position to trust their actions. Doubt is a toxic substance derived from the root issue of fear. Life can let us down and sometimes it becomes difficult to trust that a situation can and will turn around. Sometimes a belief is a choice. Belief is also an action. You either choose to do it or you don’t. Just know that you cannot serve fear and faith at the same time. Faith requires action even when you don’t know what the outcome will be. Faith means you are choosing to trust the Lord to bring something to pass in your life. Faith also means being obedient to what God is asking. If you are wanting to learn guidance and direction, His word says that all we have to do is ask Him. The Lord’s job in our life is to shepherd us, steer us, guide us, and direct us. We are His children from the moment we accept Him into our hearts.
A really great example of faith in action is what Dr. Stanley discussed when he brought up the story of Joseph. Now, Joseph is a story of great overcoming after many many years of strife. Joseph’s brother’s were envious after His father had made him a special robe. They mocked him and sold him into slavery where he ended up imprisoned. Joseph could have chosen to be angry and carry bitterness and resentment. He could have chosen to doubt God and His promises regarding the calling on his life. Instead, Joseph chose the attitude of believing God and using His time imprisoned as a time to be promoted. God rose Joseph out of the ash heap because He believed. He prayed for his family and for those that he was imprisoned with. Joseph one day was liberated and his family came to him after they had experienced great famine in their land. Joseph chose to forgive them and to bless those that had once persecuted him. He believed that God would bring him out of the situation and served the Lord in great faith and expectation that He would inherit and receive the promise because he did have faith and believed. Joseph is one of the greatest, most encouraging stories of the bible and how God fulfilled a promise to a servant who was obedient.
The word ‘obedience’ brings up another good point. You might be thinking, what does it mean for me to be obedient and how do i know that I am? Obedience means to fall in line with the word of God. To adhere to the biblical laws and to follow the words and guidance the Lord is giving you for your life. I had aforementioned ‘asking’ the Lord to reveal that to you and His plan for you to walk in step by step even when it requires great faith! That means putting on
your armor, getting girded and loined, and asking the Lord to sharpen your spiritual ears to hear and follow in a way that is respectful and honoring to Him! This brings me to the third point that Mr Stanley discussed, choosing not to fall out of obedience. The moment that you fall into temptation and sin is the moment you are no longer under the covering, meaning the authority of Christ to protect you and work on your behalf. If you are not in His grace, you are ensnared by the ways of the world. When you choose not to listen and follow what the Lord is asking, you are disappointing yourself and God. Most think that disappointment means a let down about something, to be sad about something. What the word ‘disappoint’ actually means, is to ‘dis- appoint’ meaning taking the appointment God has for your life in receiving blessing and hindering, delaying it from coming to pass. The calling may still be on your life, but the anointing has been compromised because you have chosen to take matters into your own hands rather than allowing the Lord to execute His plan. When you chose to walk away from God, you walk into sin. The reason for repenting is because we want to remove sin, sin is anything that gets in the way of our relationship with God, it’s anything that separates us from that intimacy and relationship. When we sin, we are disobedient to what God has asked of us. Even if we are saying the right prayers and believing Him for the blessing, if we are not choosing to walk in what He has asked of us, we are delaying the blessing, He is not physically able to operate on our behalf and therefore the blessing cannot and will not be delivered. If God were to still honor our disobedience, this would mean Him contributing to our sin, this means He would literally be committing sin himself. God is not going to do that, our God is omnipotent, meaning almighty and all being, He is perfect in every way and He intends to keep His word. If He says He is going to deliver His promise, He will and He has if we exhibit patience.
My final point is the discussion of the word, ‘patience’. Some of you might have wanted the result you were looking for to happen a certain way or to already have come into existence, into fruition. Theoretically there is nothing wrong with this idea, but when it is obsessed upon it can become an obsession that is strived for and then end result becomes striving. Striving is the result of pushing a door to open or full a result to happen before God’s timing; again hindering God from working on your behalf to bless the desire’s of your heart. God promises to bless you with the desires of your heart if you wait upon Him. He is the one and only that is in control of time. You would not, for example, pick a piece of fruit off of the tree before it is ripe in its due season. Likewise, you would not want a result to happen before its time or before you were truly prepared and equipped to handle it. When God sees fit, He will deliver on his word; not to deliver would be disobedience on His part. A great example of obedience in patience in the story of Job. God told Satan that he could test Job in good faith and obedience, that even tested in patience, Job would continue to honor the Lord and trust in His promises. Job was tested, everything he knew stripped of him, alienated, isolated, and he still remained true, trusting God to deliver Him in His time. Job passed the test with flying colors through trial and tribulation and inherited ALL God had for Him. God had a BETTER plan for him that he would never have received had he not fulfilled three key elements that we all should live by: faith, obedience, and patience. Surely if we live by these three attributes, will we receive ALL promises the Lord has promised and then some. A reference of proof, Malachi 3.
God loves you more than you will ever know and so do I. He wants to bless you for you are His treasure, His treasured child, but you must choose to believe that God’s promises are for you today and He has not forgotten you. He hears every prayer and knows all. He created you with a plan and a purpose in mind. He designed you for great success, but you must choose to believe in the highs, the lows, and the in between, God is up to something good in your life. I will leave you with this question, are you willing to be tested in strength, endurance, and faith, trusting and knowing that God is operating on your behalf to bring His plans for you into fruition? If you knew you couldn’t fail and you were fully committed to Him, what would your journey look like in inheriting His promises for you? Will you be the Abraham that only saw the promised land or will you enter it and eat the fruits contained in it? Keep going, I believe in you and I hope you find this an encouraging word that guides and feeds your spirit. Until next time, be blessed and keep persevering!