from JO’s sermon tonight:
we all come to places in life where we reach our limits; we’ve gone as far as our education allows, the medical report says we’re not going to get well, we haven’t been able to break the addiction. it’s easy to settle where we are and think that it’s never going to change, but:
Malachi 3:10 (NLT)
10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse… “I will open the windows of heaven for you. I will pour out a blessing so great you won’t have enough room to take it in!
when you honor God with your giving, He will open the windows of heaven and pour out blessings that you cannot contain. you may have reached your limits on your own, there are obstacles that you can’t seem to overcome; the good news is, you’re not on your own. because you’re a giver, honoring God, you are under the open windows of heaven. if you’ll get your passion back, start believing, expecting again, God is going to rain down favor, good breaks, abundance. under the open windows of heaven, healing is raining down; God can do what medicine cannot do. He has the final say. you may have gone as far as you can in your career, but under the open windows of heaven, increase, divine connections, opportunities are raining down. don’t accept that things are the way they’re always going to be; you have an advantage, you’re under the open windows of heaven, it’s just a matter of time before freedom reigns down.
sometimes, we think that we’re at a disadvantage, we don’t have the talent, connections, experience that we need; if you think you’re at a disadvantage, you will live at a disadvantage. turn it around; “I’m under the open windows of heaven. I have an abundance of everything I need; talent, ideas, strength, health.” get rid of a lack mentality; have an abundance mentality. you may not have seen it yet, but don’t worry, your time is coming. God is about to do something unusual, extraordinary, that you haven’t seen before; if you have room for it, you haven’t seen the fullness of what God’s going to do. He’s going to give you so many opportunities that you can’t take them all, so many material things, so much joy, peace, strength, stability, that you have to share them. instead of needing to be encouraged, you’ll be the encourager.
the other place in the Bible that God said He would open the windows of heaven was for the great flood; when God says that He’s going to open the windows of heaven in your life, He’s going to send a flood of His goodness. there will be blessings that you cannot contain or explain. when God rains down healing, cancer can’t stay. when He rains down joy, depression has to go. when He rains down favor, good breaks, it will thrust you to the next level. you’re not going to be able to explain it; you weren’t the most qualified, the next in line, you shouldn’t have been chosen, but you look up, and you’re further than you ever dreamed. you’ve been faithful, given, served; in this year of yes, the heavens are about to open up.
God is going to do something that you’ve never seen; it’s going to be a bountiful, abundant, prosperous year. problems that looked permanent are suddenly going to turn around, doors that have been closed for years are suddenly going to open. you’re not going to have to go after opportunity; it’s going to come after you.
now do your part; all through the day, “Father, thank You that I’m under the open windows of heaven, You’re pouring out blessings that I can’t contain.” your mind may tell you, “this is not going to happen for you, nothing’s going to change”; don’t believe those lies. keep thanking God for what He’s about to do. praise causes the heavens to open; living worried, discouraged, complaining, keeps the rain from coming down. you may not see how it can happen, but this is what faith is all about; “God, I can’t see a way, but I know that You have a way. my circumstances say that I’m stuck, but I’m not moved by what I see, I’m moved by what I know, and I know that I’m under the open windows of heaven.”
when you get this down in your spirit, you won’t be intimidated by the size of your dreams, discouraged by problems, live thinking that you’re a disadvantage; you’ll have confidence, expectancy, knowing that at any moment the heavens are going to open up.
when you do your part, God will do His part. He’ll cause people to be good to you, open doors that you can’t open. the same God that sends provision can send healing, breakthroughs, the person of your dreams. contracts, scholarships, opportunities are going to come looking for you; you’re not going to have to try to force it to happen, persuade people, God is going to cause it to fall into place. quit worrying and losing sleep; the battle is not yours, it’s the Lord’s. He’s your vindicator, protecting your reputation. stand still and you will see the deliverance of the Lord; it’s going to happen sooner than you think, and turn out better than you thought. don’t let your mind talk you out of it.
Malachi 3:11 (KJV)
11 And I will rebuke the devourer for your sakes
that means that what would have devoured opportunity, finances, because you’re a giver, God is going to rebuke that for your sake. you don’t have to live worried, in fear, on edge; you have a protector, defender, the most high God is standing guard over your life. there are many times that God has rebuked the devourer that you know nothing about: He kept you from a sickness, an accident, a supervisor from holding you back. it’s good to thank God for the blessing, promotion, favor, but sometimes you need to thank God for what didn’t happen: you didn’t get laid off, your child didn’t get in trouble, that was God behind the scenes rebuking the devourer for your sake.
how did God create light on the first day of creation when He didn’t create the sun until the fourth day? God was showing us that He can bless you without a source. He can promote you without people being for you, heal you without the treatment. when you look at your situation, you may see all the reasons why you can’t get well, accomplish a dream, break the addiction. you don’t have what you need, but God is not limited by what you don’t have. He doesn’t have to have a traditional source. He’s God; He controls the universe. what God has destined for you He can do without a bank, treatment, experience, support; He may not do it in a traditional way. what God has planned for you, He doesn’t check with your bank account, friends, talent; He speaks, and it becomes. you’re going to see things happen, and think, “how did I get here? how did I know how to do this?”
this is what happened to Ruth in the scripture:
Ruth 2:2-16 (NIV)
2 And Ruth the Moabite said to Naomi, “Let me go to the fields and pick up the leftover grain behind anyone in whose eyes I find favor.”… Boaz gave orders to his men, “Let her gather among the sheaves and don’t reprimand her. 16 Even pull out some stalks for her from the bundles and leave them for her to pick up, and don’t rebuke her.”
now, she had more than enough; she could finish in half the time. she came into abundance, but she didn’t see a source. God is going to make things happen where you don’t see a source. quit worrying because you don’t see how your situation could work out; God’s ways are not our ways, they are higher and better.
in Acts 8:
Acts 8:26 (NIV)
26 Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, “Go south to the road—the desert road—that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza.”
I’m sure this didn’t make much sense to Philip; things were going great in Samaria, and now he’s supposed to go to the desert?
Acts 8:27-38 (NIV)
27 So he started out, and on his way he met an Ethiopian eunuch, an important official in charge of all the treasury of the Kandake (which means “queen of the Ethiopians”). This man had gone to Jerusalem to worship, 28 and on his way home was sitting in his chariot reading the Book of Isaiah the prophet. 29 The Spirit told Philip, “Go to that chariot and stay near it.” 30 Then Philip ran up to the chariot and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. “Do you understand what you are reading?” Philip asked. 31 “How can I,” he said, “unless someone explains it to me?” So he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. 32 This is the passage of Scripture the eunuch was reading:
“He was led like a sheep to the slaughter,
and as a lamb before its shearer is silent,
so he did not open his mouth.
33 In his humiliation he was deprived of justice.
Who can speak of his descendants?
For his life was taken from the earth.”
34 The eunuch asked Philip, “Tell me, please, who is the prophet talking about, himself or someone else?” 35 Then Philip began with that very passage of Scripture and told him the good news about Jesus.
36 As they traveled along the road, they came to some water and the eunuch said, “Look, here is water. What can stand in the way of my being baptized?” 38 And he gave orders to stop the chariot. Then both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water and Philip baptized him.
his whole life was changed from that one encounter. he wasn’t looking for Philip, Philip chased him down; an unexpected blessing.
because you’re a giver, honoring God, God is going to have the right people search you out, cause good breaks to find you; there are blessings that God has ordained to track you down, people who’ll use their influence, experience, to push you forward, help you go where you could not go on your own. this man was leaving the temple when Philip found him; when you take time to go to the house of the Lord, don’t be surprised at unexpected blessings, because you’re under the windows of heaven. when you keep God first place, when you’re a giver, blessings will take you by surprise. you need to get ready; good breaks that you didn’t see coming, opportunities that will thrust you to next level, are on the way. you couldn’t have made it happen, you didn’t have the connections, it was the hand of God.
maybe you’re single, believing to meet the right person; you don’t have to try to convince people to like you, compromise your values, just stay on the high road, keep honoring God, and he’ll have the right people find you, somebody better than you can imagine. you don’t have to seek after people; seek after God.
in 1 Kings 18, there had been a drought in Samaria for 3.5 years. the prophet Elijah could’ve said, “God, it’s not fair; I’m serving you, but I’m not under the open windows of heaven, I’m in a drought.” instead:
1 Kings 18:42-43 (NIV)
42 … Elijah climbed to the top of Carmel, bent down to the ground and put his face between his knees.
43 “Go and look toward the sea,” he told his servant. And he went up and looked.
“There is nothing there,” he said.
this is when many people give up and get discouraged, but not Elijah:
1 Kings 18:41-44 (NKJV)
41 Then Elijah said to Ahab, “Go up, eat and drink; for there is the sound of abundance of rain.”… And seven times he said, “Go again.”
44 Then it came to pass the seventh time, that he said, “There is a cloud, as small as a man’s hand, rising out of the sea!” So he said, “Go up, say to Ahab, ‘Prepare your chariot, and go down before the rain stops you.’”
Elijah heard rain in his spirit before he saw the rain on the outside. God always puts things in your spirit before they come to pass; that’s why you have to latch onto promises. in the midst of struggle and lack, you have to hear abundance. in loneliness, you have to hear friendships. in sickness, you have to hear health. in trouble and opposition, you have to hear victory.
1 Kings 18:45-46 (NIV)
45 Meanwhile, the sky grew black with clouds, the wind rose, a heavy rain started falling and Ahab rode off to Jezreel. 46 The power of the Lord came on Elijah and, tucking his cloak into his belt, he ran ahead of Ahab all the way to Jezreel.
when you’re under the open windows of heaven, God will help you accomplish things that you could not accomplish on your own.
what Elijah heard in his spirit came to pass. the things you’ve been hearing in your spirit: abundance, dreams, healing, child coming back home, meeting the right person, it’s about to suddenly happen. you’ve been praying, thanking God, doing the right thing; get ready, the heavens are about to open up. you’re going to see an abundance of favor, joy, healing. you’re going to go further than you ever imagined, discover ability that you didn’t know was in you. God is going to bless you without a source. quit focusing on what you don’t have; all Elijah had was a little cloud, no chance of rain in the natural, but we serve a supernatural God. He can give light without the sun, healing without the treatment, promotion without people being for you. now all through the day, “Father, thank You that I’m under the open windows of heaven.” have an abundant mentality. if you’ll do this, God is about to pour out blessings that you cannot contain; unexpected favor, divine connections, healing, breakthroughs, the fullness of your destiny.