I received a "ministry letter" recently from a well-known Christian leader who wrote that he stopped to pray just for me. Of course this was a form letter that went out to thousands of people. God showed him that we were under attack by the devil, but God showed him the secret to me getting free. It said, “I felt that your finances, health and a loved one were being attacked by the devil.” (Well, that was hard to figure out!)
Then he says, "I felt that the only way for you to understand what is going to happen is if you trusted that the prophecy that I have for you is TRUE and ACCURATE." This was of course ignoring that the Bible says that we are to test all things and hold fast to what is good. What is this prophetic word? What is the secret sauce?
In step 4, I am to "follow God's instructions exactly. Give a seed-faith offering that is larger than whatever you have given before...exactly 5 days after I receive your seed offering and your prayer needs, MIRACLES are going to start EXPLODING in your life..."
Really? It was nothing more than a sales letter. Sales letters are fine, but Jesus' miracles aren't for sale. It's not about a formula. It is about favor!
WE ALL WANT MIRACLES BUT FAVOR IS FREE!
We all want miracles but have you ever noticed that it's seems like some people just have it made? I mean it seems like everything seems to go their way. Everything they touch turns to gold. Things just work out for them. They always have a testimony. They always have a story to tell. It’s like they have some inside connect with God that the rest of us don’t have.
And our response to those kind of people can be varied. Some of us could get jealous or envious. Others get angry at God because they are trying to do everything right and nothing seems to go right.
The truth is you really do want that dream job. You really want to get out of debt. You really need that healing. You really want to have great friendships with people who enjoy you instead of tolerate you. You really want that business to flourish.
May I tell you the secret sauce? You ARE a magnet for good things. Good things are attracted to you. So much so that goodness and mercy follow you all the days of your life. Are you still alive? Then everywhere you go they are trying to chase you down and turn everything your way!
I’m not saying God owes you something. I’m not talking about an entitlement mentality. I’m not saying you “deserve” it. Quite the contrary. THAT IS the PROBLEM. That is the rub right there. A lot of Christians were taught entitlement, that if they tithed God would bless them, if they did good, then God would give them good things. But that is not favor. That is legalism.
The word favor and the word grace are the same thing! Romans 11:6, says, “if it is by grace, it no longer by works, otherwise grace is no longer grace.”
JESUS grew in wisdom and stature and FAVOR...(Luke 2:52). The Father wasn't giving Jesus more favor. Jesus was growing up into the favor that he already had! You don't need more favor, you simply need to grow up into the favor you already possess.
If you are still trying to qualify in your heart for good things, do you know what happens? You still believe that you can’t have them UNTIL you measure up. You constantly disqualify yourself- so you never go for your dream job because you don’t really believe you deserve it. You don’t feel qualified for the friendships that you want. And when opportunities come around, you won’t see them because you aren’t really looking for them.
FAVOR IS YOUR NATURAL HABITAT
The Law demands. Grace supplies. It is so hard for some Christians to get this. They are still looking for the next spiritual formula to get things from God or get answers to prayer… but every attempt to do so is at best a mixed gospel of law and grace. A law, in fact that doesn't even exist, since the entire priesthood, sacrifices, temple, ordinances, genealogy, and tablets of stone were destroyed in AD 70.
So imagine yourself SPONGEBOB or Aquaman at the bottom of the Ocean, not because your spouse threw you off the boat, but because it's your natural habitat. It’s your native environment. You breathe water like it's air. And you look around and notice how everything there is connected to water, touched by the salt water. Every nook and cranny. Every living thing is saturated.
The Bible says that the knowledge of the glory of the Lord covers the earth like the waters cover the sea (Hab. 2:14). Is. 6:3 says that the whole earth is full of his glory. That means, that like the ocean water, everything around you is filled with glory… every inanimate object, every living thing, every molecule of oxygen, everything in the quantum field of energy. The universe is saturated by the glory of God.
Paul said in Philippians 4:19, “My God shall supply all my need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”
Where are his riches? In his glory right? Where is his glory according to Habakkuk and Isaiah? Everywhere! Including you. Christ in you the hope of glory. The entire universe is filled with the glory of God, waiting to meet your needs and my needs. There is no such thing as lack...only inability to see the abundance. The entire universe is waiting for us to believe that we have favor, that we have grace, an unmerited supply of what we need.
Paul said, Christ Jesus meets “all our need”. Most of the time we think about that as God making sure we have at least a tin roof over our head, and at least an old worn torn up t-shirt to wear. That is poverty, not provision. I think meeting all our need is more closely related to the word PROVISION. God is pro- "for" your godly vision. In fact that is the context of Paul’s words.
See the gospel is not what we’ve been taught. It isn’t a get out of hell free card. When we see it like that, the implication is that the answer is getting to go to heaven. That eliminates everything in between. David said, “I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.” Jesus is advancing his kingdom in the earth, which touches every arena of life.
Paul was on a mission to preach the gospel, he had a God-given vision to preach the gospel to the Gentiles and specifically in Rome. He said, his God would supply all his need according to his riches in glory. In other words, no matter where Paul was or what was happening there was an answer for him already supplied in the realm of glory all around him. It may be an angel comes to him to warn him of the ship sinking. It may be when he’s about to drown in the sea, a piece of wood comes floating right over to him and he surfs right into shore. It may mean that when they throw him in jail an earthquake will open the prison doors. It may mean God blesses his tent-making side job so he has enough for the next steps. God is PRO-VISION for your life… BY GRACE. Grace supplies. You have FAVOR for everything that you need!
WHO IS TRYING TO CONVINCE WHOM?
It’s like being extremely wealthy, but not looking like the Pillsbury Dough Boy by carrying around a million dollars in your jacket. All you do is ask and believe, trust, rest that you already have the favor. Jesus said that the Father already knows what you have need of BEFORE you ask (Mt. 6:8). So you never need to convince the Father… HE’s THE ONE TRYING TO CONVINCE US!!!!
Your belief doesn't grant you favor like it is some payment to God for a miracle or answer to prayer. Nor does unbelief stop favor. It's that only heart belief causes you to SEE IT. So start looking for it!
Paul says all this is BY CHRIST Jesus. Just in case you didn't know, Christ is not his first or last name. It means ANOINTED ONE. It is the ANOINTING that is the FAVOR. It is the presence that attracts answers and solutions and provision. The thing is… YOU ARE ALREADY ANOINTED because you are IN CHRIST! Therefore, we live FROM FAVOR, NOT to get favor.
What is your vision this year? What is your goal? What do you need PRO-VISION for? When you ask, simply allow your heart to fully trust that the favor on your life will draw in the people, the answers or the finances for the next step in that journey. There is an old saying, "When the student is ready, the teacher will appear." Indeed.
Here is the video if you prefer: http://youtu.be/uLNNdz3xGsw
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Photo: Mountainous lake in glacier national park, Watery OutID: 215513, © Mistercheezit | Dreamstime Stock Photos
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