Archive for June 27th, 2016

It’s on the way

from JO’s sermon tonight:

what you’re believing for, promises you’re standing on, dreams you’ve been praying about, they’re already en route; the healing, promotion, right people are coming. you may not see any signs of it yet, everything looks the same; what you can’t see is, behind-the-scenes, God is moving the wrong people out of the way, pushing back the forces of darkness, arranging things in your favor, lining up the breaks you need. He’s called the author and finisher of our faith; He’s going to finish what He started in your life. God didn’t bring you this far to leave you. you may have big challenges, but we serve a big God. your enemies may be powerful, but our God is all-powerful. that dream may look impossible; you don’t think you have the connections, resources, talent, but God can do the impossible. even when the odds are against you, God is for you and He’s saying it’s on the way.

sometimes, you need these words of faith spoken over your life. words have creative power; if you’ll let them take root, they’ll ignite the faith in your spirit. because life has a way of pushing us down; if you’re not careful, you look up, and you’re not believing like you used to, not passionate, dreaming, you don’t see how your situation could work out. here’s the key; you don’t have to figure it out. our job is to believe, go out each day with expectancy, saying, “God, I may not see a way, but I know You have a way. I believe my breakthrough is on the way.I believe my healing, promotion, freedom from this addiction, it’s just a matter of time before it shows up.” if you don’t have this anticipation that it’s on the way, then it can keep it from happening. you may have big obstacles in your path, you can’t overcome them on your own. the good news is, you’re not on your own; you have the most powerful Force in the universe breathing in your direction. when He speaks, Red Seas part, blind eyes open, dreams come back to life. we look at our circumstances in the natural, but He’s a supernatural God. Isaiah said:

Isaiah 45:2 (NKJV)

2 ‘I will go before you

And make the crooked places straight 

God is fighting your battles; no person, bad break, sickness, failure, can stop you. get your fire back; you have to stir your faith up. maybe at one time you believed, were passionate, excited about life, but things haven’t turned out the way you hoped; you’ve had some bad breaks and disappointments. God is saying, “it’s time to believe, dream again.” you haven’t seen your best days. what God promised you is still going to come to pass; it’s not too late, you haven’t missed too many opportunities. if it would have happened sooner, it wouldn’t’ve been the right time; now is the time. start believing again.

maybe somebody walked out on you, did you wrong, but that didn’t stop God’s plan for your life. don’t give up on your dreams, live hurt, wounded, thinking, “they ruined my life.” they don’t control your destiny, they don’t have that much power over you. what they did may not have been fair, but God is going to make it up to you; He’s saying new beginnings, friendships, opportunities are on the way.  they meant it for your harm; God’s going to use it for your good:

Genesis 50:20 (NABRE)

20 Even though you meant harm to me, God meant it for good

you may have struggled in your finances a long time, can’t seem to get ahead, now you’ve just settled there, thinking that’s the way it’s always going to be. God is saying, “I have increase on the way, favor, promotion, opportunities, that have your name on them.

Malachi 3:10 (NLT)

10 … 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! 

why don’t you get up each day, and say, “Father, thank You that abundance is coming my way, that I’ll lend and not borrow, You’re opening doors no man can shut.” when you live with this expectancy, that’s when dreams come to pass, doors open that you could never open, you’ll see explosive blessings that catapult you to the next level.

but too many people have given up on what God’s put in their heart. they tried and it didn’t work out, now they think the dream is dead: they’ll never get well, meet the right person, come into abundance. but what you think is dead is not really dead; that seed is still alive. God doesn’t abort dreams; He doesn’t give up on what He put in us.

in John 11:

John 11:1-14 (NLT)

1 A man named Lazarus was sick… 5 So although Jesus loved Martha, Mary, and Lazarus, 6 he stayed where he was for the next two days… 14 So he told them plainly, “Lazarus is dead.

but it’s interesting; Jesus said to his disciples:

John 11:11 (NIV)

11 After he had said this, he went on to tell them, “Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I am going there to wake him up.”

Lazarus was clearly dead, but Jesus had a different perspective; he said he’s only asleep. could it be that what you think is dead, looks like your marriage is never going to make it, you’ll never get well, never accomplish the dream, like Lazarus, all the circumstances say that it’s over and done, but God says, “I have a different perspective. I can see things that you can’t see; it’s not dead, it’s just asleep.” it may look permanent; the truth is, it’s only temporary.

Jesus showed up at Lazarus’s house:

John 11:39 (NLT)

39 … he has been dead for four days. The smell will be terrible.”

at times, we all have things in life that stink; maybe your marriage feels so dead that it stinks, that bankruptcy, that layoff stinks, that mistake you made that set you back, it stinks.

John 11:39-40 (NIV)

39 “Take away the stone,” he said.

“But, Lord,” said Martha, the sister of the dead man, “by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been there four days.”

40 Then Jesus said, “Did I not tell you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?” 

what’s the point? Jesus went to where the stink was. sometimes, we think that God will only help us if we’ve lived perfect, everything is nice and whole, but God goes to the stinky places in our lives. the person that hurt you, did you wrong, it stinks, God is saying, “let Me in. I’m going to wake up the healing, restoration, new beginning.” that mistake you made, you feel condemned, every voice tells you, “God’s not going to bless you. nothing good is coming your way; you blew, it you stink.”  God is saying, “no, roll that stone away; I’m not bothered by the stink.” God goes to the stinky places, where you were betrayed, lost a loved one, compromised. you feel disqualified; God says, “let Me in. the stink is only temporary; the dream is not dead, it’s just asleep.”

John 11:43-44 (NIV)

43 When he had said this, Jesus called in a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” 44 The dead man came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face.

Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”

Lazarus went on to live many more years. 

I believe today that things that you’ve given up on, that you think are dead, like Lazarus, they’re about to wake up: marriages, dreams, healing, abundance are waking up. God is saying to us what He said to the disciples; “it’s not dead, it’s just asleep.” healing, joy, victory is coming. it may have been asleep a long time, you think there’s no way it could happen now; that’s what Mary and Martha thought. but it’s not too late, too far gone; you need to get ready, God’s about to wake it up.

this is what he did for Sarah, a lady in the scripture. she and her husband Abraham had tried for many years to have a baby with no success. now, Sarah is 80 years old; everything logically speaking said, “there’s no way,” but what God has promised you, He’s still going to bring to pass.  God is not limited by the laws of nature. you’re not at the mercy of your age, education, background. God has unlimited power; one touch of His favor can turn a situation around. Sarah thought her womb was dead; what she didn’t realize was, it was only asleep. at nearly 100 years old, she gave birth to a baby; the promise came to pass.

like with Sarah, God has put dreams and promises in you. it may not have happened yet; you’ve tried again and again, and it didn’t work out. now, maybe you’ve settled there, and think, “it wasn’t meant to be,” but God is full of surprises; He’s about to wake up that dream you’ve given up on, bring back to life what you thought was dead. your latter days are going to be more rewarding, fulfilling, than your former days. you’re going to give birth to more in the future than you’ve lost in the past. your baby, promise, dream, is on the way.

as a young man, Moses made a mistake and killed a man. he was trying to deliver God’s people, he had that dream his heart, but he got in a hurry; he had to flee for his life. he ended up spending years on the backside of the desert. I’m sure he thought, “I had a big dream, I knew I was going to do something great with my life, leave my mark, but I blew it.” he gave up on his dream; he had nobody to blame except himself. but just because we give up, doesn’t mean God gives up. 40 years later, God said, “Moses, I’m here to wake up your dream. now it’s time to go deliver my people.” Moses went out and did just that; he saw the dream come to pass. 

like Moses, you may have made mistakes; we all have. like Sarah, you may have had disappointments, your plans didn’t work out, now you think it’s been too long. what you’ve given up on is not dead, it’s just asleep. that business you wanted to start, that book you wanted to write, that addiction you’ve been trying to break, every voice tells you, “it’s too late, you’re too old, it’s never going to happen.” no, get ready, God’s about to wake it up: your baby, spouse, business, freedom is coming. get in agreement with God; He’s waking it up. don’t let it go back to sleep; stir your faith up, believe that it’s on the way, go out with expectancy. when your mind tells you, “you’re never going to get well,” wake up the healing; “God is restoring health back unto me.” “you’ll never get out of debt”; wake up the abundance, “I will lend and not borrow.” “you’ll never overcome that problem”; wake up the victory, “God always causes me to triumph.”  keep your mind going in the right direction. 

in Mark 6:

Mark 6:1-5 (NIV)

6 Jesus left there and went to his hometown, accompanied by his disciples. 2 When the Sabbath came, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed.

“Where did this man get these things?” they asked. “What’s this wisdom that has been given him? What are these remarkable miracles he is performing? 3 Isn’t this the carpenter? Isn’t this Mary’s son and the brother of James, Joseph,[a] Judas and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him.

4 Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own town, among his relatives and in his own home.” 5 He could not do any miracles there, except lay his hands on a few sick people and heal them.

verse 6 says:

Mark 6:6 (GNV)

6 And he marveled at their unbelief

in Matthew 8:

Matthew 8:5-10 (NASB)

5 And when Jesus entered Capernaum, a centurion came to Him, imploring Him, 6 and saying, Lord, my]servant is lying paralyzed at home, fearfully tormented.” 7 Jesus *said to him, “I will come and heal him.” 8 But the centurion said, “Lord, I am not worthy for You to come under my roof, but just say the word, and my servant will be healed… 10 Now when Jesus heard this, He marveled and said to those who were following, “Truly I say to you, I have not found such great faith with anyone in Israel.

at one place, he marveled at their doubt; at another, he marveled at their faith. when God looks at you, what will He marvel at? “I’ll never get well; I’ve had this sickness for so long. I’ll never accomplish my dreams; I tried, and it didn’t work out.” when you think like that, God marvels at your unbelief; that ties His hands. why don’t you come over into faith? “yes, I’ve had this sickness a long time, but I know my healing is on the way. I had a bad break, it wasn’t fair, but I know God has beauty for these ashes, favor is in my future.” when we think like that, then God marvels at your faith; that’s what allows Him to do more than we can ask or think.

what’s interesting is, the people that doubted, had the unbelief, were the religious people. they were in the synagogue each week; they were the faithful members. I say this respectfully; sometimes, religion will try to talk you out of God’s best. it will tell you, “in the sweet by-and-by you can live a victorious life, but down here you just have to suffer through it, just endure, don’t expect too much.” if Jesus were here, he would marvel at that unbelief. some people are taught that the day of miracles is over, God doesn’t still heal, bless and show favor, that was for Bible days. but there never was a day of miracles; there’s a God of miracles. He’s still alive and on the throne. 

this Roman officer that had great faith wasn’t a religious person; he hadn’t been indoctrinated to think that it couldn’t happen. he simply believed; “that man is the son of God. I’ve seen the miracles; he’s done it for others, he can do it for me.” he received his miracle while the religious people went without. when you take the limits off of God, dare to believe for your dreams, don’t be surprised if people try to talk you out of it, say things like, “do you really think you’ll get well, start that business, break that addiction? I don’t know, seems kind of far out to me.” God is either going to marvel at your faith, or marvel at your unbelief. don’t let another person talk you out of what God put in your heart; believe big, dream big, pray big. God is longing to be good to you; He wants to make you an example of His goodness, so everywhere you go, you don’t even have to say anything, your life is a testimony. people look at you and say, “he’s blessed, she’s highly favored.” you radiate joy, peace, favor, victory; you’re a living testimony.

Jesus didn’t say to this Roman officer, “I’m not going to do anything for you, you don’t attend my church, you’re not my nationality, you don’t look like me, who do you think you are?” none of that made any difference. all that mattered to Jesus was, “this man has great faith, he believes I can do something out of the ordinary, so I’m going to show myself strong in his life.” you may think that you’re not religious enough, that God would never help you. people tell me often, “I’m not a religious person, I wasn’t raised in church like you,” almost like they’re apologizing. can I tell you; God is not looking for religion, he’s looking for people who simply believe in Him, that know He controls the universe, that He can do the impossible.

in the Old Testament, the Israelites had wandered around in the desert for many years. God was about to take them into the promised land, but there were 7 nations in their path that were much bigger. Moses didn’t know what they were going to do; in the natural, they could never defeat them. but God said:

Deuteronomy 7:1-2 (NASB)

7 “When the Lord your God brings you into the land where you are entering to possess it, and clears away many nations before you, the Hittites and the Girgashites and the Amorites and the Canaanites and the Perizzites and the Hivites and the Jebusites, seven nations greater and stronger than you, 2 and when the Lord your God delivers them before you and you defeat them, then you shall utterly destroy them.

God is saying, “you don’t have to fight these battles in your own strength; I’m going to go before you and clear the path, make things happen that you couldn’t make happen. I’m going to defeat your enemies for you.” like the Israelites, we all face times when the odds are against us. it’s easy to think, “this sickness is much bigger, stronger than me, this addiction, these people coming against me, they’re much more powerful.” don’t worry; God is going before you right now, clearing the path. on your own, you may be outnumbered. what you’re up against may be bigger, stronger, more talented, have more resources, but you’re not on your own; the God who controls the universe says He will take care of your enemies. in other words, the cancer may be stronger than you, but it’s not stronger than our God. that debt may look insurmountable, you don’t see how you could ever get out, but it’s no match for our God; He owns it all, He made streets out of gold.

you have the God Who spoke worlds into existence on your side; instead of saying, “I can’t do it,” dwelling on the negative, all through the day, “Father, thank You that You’re defeating my enemies, clearing the path. I know You’re stronger than this addiction, more powerful than this cancer, bigger than this debt. Lord thank You that healing, wholeness, freedom, victory is on the way.” the scripture says: 

Zechariah 4:6 (NIV)

6 … Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit

you don’t have to do it on your own. Moses said:

Exodus 14:13 (ISV)

13 Moses told the people, “Don’t be afraid! Stand still and watch how the Lord will deliver you today

you may be up against something big right now. don’t get discouraged, don’t live stressed-out, stand still; God is clearing the path, fighting your battles. He’s going to give you victory over powerful enemies. it may not happen overnight, but as long as you’re believing God is at work, at the right time He’s going to take you into your promised land. that victory is on the way.

God can make things happen that we could never make happen. right now, He’s going before you, defeating enemies that are much more powerful. that debt may look like it’s going to be with you your whole, life but get ready; He’s clearing the path. that sickness, addiction, legal problem may be bigger, stronger, more powerful, but it’s no match for our God; He is all-powerful. I’m asking you to stir your faith up. don’t hear all this and be like the people in Jesus’ hometown, where he marveled at the unbelief; let’s be like the Roman officer, where Jesus marvels at our faith. those dreams you’ve given up on, those promises that you’ve let go of, you need to go get them back; they’re not dead, they’re just asleep. like with Lazarus, God is about to wake up what you thought was over and done: healing, freedom, the fullness of your destiny, abundance is on the way.

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