Keep the Vision in Sight 2
When Hope seems lost, KEEP BUILDING
I Corinthians 9:19 NKJV ―For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a servant to all, that I might win the more;
It’s easy to just go with the flow and it’s difficult to rise up and take new territory!
This means we don’t just go with the flow, we have a heart to give to be a blessing & to make a difference!
We aren’t perfect, but we are righteous!
I Corinthians 9:20-23 NKJV ―and to the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might win Jews; to those who are under the law, as under the law, that I might win those who are under the law; to those who are without law, as without law (not being without law toward God, but under law toward Christ), that I might win those who are without law; to the weak I became as weak, that I might win the weak. I have become all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. Now this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I may be partaker of it with you.
We are called to partner together to Win Souls for Christ, that’s it and then to be committed followers of Jesus!
James 1:25 NKJV ―But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.‖
Continues; par-am-en’-o to stay near, to remain (literally, to be permanent or persevere)
Winners to often what others only do occasionally!
As we live in the ―secret place‖ this year, we are gonna keep winning, winning souls and taking territory for good!
James 1:25 MSG ―But whoever catches a glimpse of the revealed counsel of God—the free life!—even out of the corner of his eye, and sticks with it, is no distracted scatterbrain but a man or woman of action. That person will find delight and affirmation in the action.‖
There was a time when Timothy was caught in fear, he was losing his passion and he needed to be reminded why he was running why it was so important to WIN.
He needed to be reminded to keep the Vision in front of him!
1 Timothy 6:11-12 TPT ―Timothy, you are God’s man, so run from all these errors. Instead, chase after true holiness, justice, faithfulness, love, hope, and tender humility. So fight with faith for the winner’s prize! Lay your hands upon eternal life, to which you were called and about which you made the
good confession before the multitude of witnesses!‖
That brings the Vision and Purpose back into perspective, you will have times were it feels like it’s hopeless, that’s part of the battle, but a winning attitude keeps the Faith keeps building!
Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV ―For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.‖
Jeremiah 29:10 NKJV ―For thus says the Lord: After seventy years are completed at Babylon, I will visit you and perform My good word toward you, and cause you to return to this place.
Jeremiah’s letter (prophecy) to the Captives
Jeremiah 29:4-7 NKJV ―Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, to all who were carried away captive, whom I have caused to be carried away from Jerusalem to Babylon: Build houses and dwell in them; plant gardens and eat their fruit. Take wives and beget sons and daughters; and take wives for your sons and give your daughters to husbands, so that they may bear sons and daughters—that you may be increased there, and not diminished. And seek the peace of the city where I have caused you to be carried away captive, and pray to the Lord for it; for in its peace you will have peace.‖
This is a reminder of the spiritual principle of persistence and diligence, even when things go slow, or seem like they are taking long or haven’t worked out yet, don’t STOP BUILDING, don’t let doubt enter and steal your JOY.
Now he speaks Jeremiah 29:11 NKJV ―For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.‖
Listen to the verses that follow this wonderful encouragement…
Jeremiah 29:12-13 NKJV ―Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.‖
Here’s the NT counterpart to this Promise:
Ephesians 3:20 NKJV ―Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us,‖
We think exceeding our expectation maybe in a natural sense, I get what I wanted or even more than I wanted (instead of getting 1 car, I get 3)
When we think like that it can stir comparisons or even disappointment and a loss of hope, God actually means he Will give you what you don’t even know you really want and it will
make a difference to your life and others!
Ephesians 3:20 NLT ―Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.‖
When you surrender the result to God to work out, I promise you, you will get exceedingly more than you ever imagined (deep satisfaction and spiritual nourishment beyond your comprehension)
Can I share some NUGGETS that have helped me, when it hasn’t happened yet or didn’t quite work out the way I thought, that help us to KEEP ON BUILDING:
1. Timing & Positioning is everything!
Psalm 40:1-2 NKJV ―I waited patiently for the Lord; And He inclined to me, And heard my cry. He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, Out of the miry clay, And set my feet upon a rock, And established my steps.‖
Craig Groeschel says: ―when it’s not God’s time you can’t force it, when it is God’s time you can’t
Luke 10:41–42 NKJV ―And Jesus answered and said to her, ―Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.‖
IS IT PRACTICAL or REALISTIC to be occupied with Jesus? Does it help you? Does it put food on the table? Does it prosper your finances? Does it make your physical body healthy?
We know what it did for Peter—he walked on water. Now, let’s take a look at what it did for Mary. You can find the story of Mary and her sister, Martha, in Luke 10:38–42.
The thing that’s so powerful here is learning the importance of keeping your eyes, ears and heart on Him. Mary was seated at Jesus’ feet when the Lord came to visit them. Martha, the elder sister, was busy working in the kitchen, making sure that everything was in order and ensuring that there was enough food and drink for their guest. Who was Martha busy serving? Jesus.
And while Martha was frantically running in and out of the kitchen, what was her younger sister Mary doing? In the midst of all the busyness and activity, IS sitting at Jesus’ feet, beholding His beauty, beholding His glory and hanging on to every word that proceeded from His lips. While Mary was resting and drawing living water from Jesus, her sister Martha was restless, frantic and stressed from serving Jesus. (Trying to make things happen herself, her timing & positioning were both off) One sister was focused on serving, while the other was focused on receiving.
Look what happens after a while;
Martha’s stress from serving leads to an outburst of frustration: ―Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me‖ (Luke 10:40).
In this moment of anger, she blames two people:
– The Lord Jesus and
– her sister Mary.
Now, listen closely to Jesus’ response, and maybe you just see yourself in the Lord’s description: ―Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”
NOW, according to culture it was right for Mary to be in the kitchen preparing food and serving her guest and it would have been offensive & shameful for Mary to sit at Jesus’ feet and not help Martha, BUT Jesus was NO ordinary guest.
MARY RECOGNISED WHO JESUS WAS. He was God in the flesh, SHE SAW THE TIMING OF THIS MOMENT and so she POSITIONED HERSELF AT HIS FEET.
The greatest way you can minister to God when He is in your home is to sit at His feet and keep drawing from Him!
Psalm 1 / Psalm 34 / Psalm 37 John 4:20 Gos is seeking the true worshippers and HE is delighted for us to SIT AND RECEIVE FROM HIM (the posture of Humilty) our Lord.
That is why Jesus was pleased with Mary.
DON’T GET SO BUSY serving the Lord and not spend the time preparing your heart by keeping your eyes, ears and heart on Him.
One sister saw Jesus in the natural, needing her ministry. The other sister saw Him as God veiled in flesh with a fullness to draw upon. JESUS HAD not come to be fed but to feed! Unfortunately, sometimes, the hardest thing for us to do is to sit down! Sometimes, the most challenging thing we can do is to cease from our own efforts and rest solely on Jesus’ unmerited favor. Often, we are like Martha— worried, busy and troubled about many things. It can all be legitimate things that we are worried about. In Martha’s case, she was trying her best to serve the Lord. She ended up doing many things that day, but missed out on doing the one thing that actually WAS NEEDFUL AS THE CATALYST TO SERVICE!
We find that later, in the Gospel of John, Mary took a pound of very costly oil of spikenard, anointed the feet of Jesus and wiped His feet with her hair to prepare Him for His burial (John 12:3–8).
On resurrection morning, some women came with ointment to anoint Jesus’ body, but it was too late then. They were doing the right thing, but at the wrong time. The Lord had already risen. But Mary did the right thing at the right time. When you do this God will position you and you will end up doing the right thing at the right time, and God will cause all that you touch to be amazingly
blessed. Choose to live in then‖Secret Place‖ as you focus on the Lord and rest in His finished work and remember, as Jesus is, so are you in this world!
2. It could be “You need to address something’s” in your life.
1 Corinthians 6:12 NKJV ―All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful. All things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any. Foods for the stomach and the stomach for foods, but God will destroy both it and them. Now the body is not for sexual immorality but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body. And God both raised up the Lord and will also raise us up by His power.‖
It’s Gods plan to Raise you up, not push you down!
Go back to last point of obedience, pick it up again, make that change and stay faithful to it!
James 4:7-10 NKJV ―Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.‖
James 1:12-15 NKJV ―Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. Let no one say when he is tempted, ―I am tempted by God‖; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death.‖
3. Your Faith is been tested to build your Patience and get you ready for BETTER!
I Peter 1:6-7 NKJV ―In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ,‖
Continue to be intentional about giving thanks and raising praise
Ephesians 5:19-20 NKJV ―speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,‖
Psalm 23:1-6 NKJV
4. The devil is contending your territory
Luke 22:31-32 NKJV ―And the Lord said, ―Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.‖‖
Acts 28:4-6 NKJV ―So when the natives saw the creature hanging from his hand, they said to one another, ―No doubt this man is a murderer, whom, though he has escaped the sea, yet justice does not allow to live.‖ But he shook off the creature into the fire and suffered no harm. However, they were expecting that he would swell up or suddenly fall down dead. But after they had looked for a long time and saw no harm come to him, they changed their minds and said that he was a god.‖
5. God has something better or different in mind for you (you just haven’t caught it yet)
Ephesians 3:20-21 MSG ―God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us. Glory to God in the church! Glory to God in the Messiah, in Jesus! Glory down all the generations! Glory through all millennia! Oh, yes!‖
Reflection: Learn to Live and Walk in the power of Christ’s perception of you, how Jesus sees you, let that govern how you think & what you do, that’s embracing your new identity in Christ and not relying on yourself!
Matthew 8:23-27 NKJV ―Now when He got into a boat, His disciples followed Him. And suddenly a great tempest arose on the sea, so that the boat was covered with the waves. But He was asleep. Then His disciples came to Him and awoke Him, saying, ―Lord, save us! We are perishing!‖ But He said to them, ―Why are you fearful, O you of little faith?‖ Then He arose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. So the men marvelled, saying, ―Who can this be, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?‖‖
(Peter walking on the water)
Sometimes when something is wrong, we panic or mis-asses that everything is wrong, but it’s not-JESUS is still KING and everything will work out just fine, when we TRUST HIM!
At Your Service / Our 5 VALUES
Keep God’s vision before you and just BUILD!
I Thessalonians 4:10-12 NKJV ―and indeed you do so toward all the brethren who are in all Macedonia. But we urge you, brethren, that you increase more and more; that you also aspire to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business, and to work with your own hands, as we commanded
you, that you may walk properly toward those who are outside, and that you may lack nothing.‖
We can save ourselves a great deal of mental anguish and trouble by learning to stay out of the affairs of other people. Most of us are too free with our advice and we often give it when the truth is that nobody really wants it.
God’s will for us is peace, and if we read the scripture quoted above, we find that peace and minding our own affairs are linked together. I am sure you are like me in that you have enough of your own affairs to tend to without getting involved in other people’s. Of course, if people ask for and truly want our advice or help, we should be ready to help them, but we should do so with an attitude of humility.
Most of us are quick to judge others who are not like us or who don’t make the decisions that we would, but it would help each of us to remember that God instructs us not to judge at a glance or superficially (*see John 7:24*). Only God truly knows people’s hearts and motives, and only He is qualified to judge righteously. When the Holy Spirit makes me aware that I am allowing judgmental thoughts to linger in my mind, I often say to myself, ―Joyce, this is none of your business,‖ and I let it go. Ask God to help you mind your own business!
*Prayer of the Day:* Lord, I am sorry for all the times I have judged people and gotten into their affairs without being invited. Forgive me and help me mind my own business, *Amen.*