“Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
This is a powerful scripture about the word “New” and the concept of “Passed Away”. I have to say that the excitement that is brewing in us for this new-year is great. The tougher the world gets and the circumstances of gloom, the greater the light of God shines to signify the vast difference between God’s design and man’s design. We are to be people of the Spirit and not people of the flesh. We were once people of darkness but now those things have ‘passed away’ and we truly have become ‘new creatures’……I hope! Too many times, church is fire-insurance in many people’s minds. Too many times church is like a social club with a cross hanging over it! Too many times we have failed to grasp the reality of the above scripture! Too many times “ …the little foxes are ruining the vineyards, while our vineyards are in blossom.” Song of Solomon 2:15.
I don’t for a second believe that the intention of the Christian is to be carnal, but the result so many times is exactly that! This is a very sad situation indeed! This year is a year to re-align the “just getting by” message and getting back to the wonders of the holiness of God in our lives, we believe! It is like the young person who is nearing the end of their high school years, full of hope and the promise of their exciting future. They have great big plans bursting forth from within them. They are enthusiastic and bursting with anticipation, and no one seems to be able to dampen it! Some plan on taking a year off and working in order to put away some money away in order to attend college or university. More often than not, they never make it to college or university, as after working for a while, many start to make some major purchases like: a new car, and other items that begin to tie them down. That first job often adjusts their plans and their hope of a great future, many times goes up in smoke.
Is it not the same for the Christian? They read a book by an awesome man or woman of God who is walking in the healing anointing and they think, “That’s for me Lord, anoint me like that so I can heal all of those who are stuck in the bondage of sickness and disease.” Or the one who feels called to go to the mission fields to serve their lives in that area. Then there is the one who cannot help him or herself from evangelizing wherever they go. Too many times these desires are snuffed out by lukewarm pastors, teachers or other Christians who plant seeds designed to dampen those exuberant dreams by selling the “Generic Christian Life” to the excited ones full of enthusiasm and hope!
These dreams of the Christian are not even the greatest dreams possible, but even they are snuffed out quickly, too many times. When our dreams and our hope is dried up, so are we! When our vision becomes dull, we do the same! It is time to re-align folks! We’ve been listening to too many “nay sayers” instead of turning to the One who is always full of hope, great dreams, enormous possibilities and breathtaking visions! We need to become so much a “Friend of God” that our natural friends become less important than our close-knit relationship to Jesus! I am not saying that we disregard our natural friends! We need to cherish them and love them, but seek the One who’s “All things are possible” message bursts open within us! There have been great men and women of God, who have accomplished great things upon the earth, and we are ever so grateful for their example, but God has not run out of plans folks! Your life was birthed to glorify your Father in heaven in more wonderful ways than you can currently conceive of.
We are living in a very prophetic time of Biblical events taking place before our very eyes every day! This is a colossal time to do great exploits for God! His glory has never dimmed; only our sensitivity to it. When we retune our satellite dishes and our antennae upon the constant calling of the voice of God, we will hear great things that will inspire us to step out of the natural and into the supernatural, or to put it another way, from the flesh into the spirit realm. The problem with this concept though is that we need to become new creatures that are not of this world, born-again in the Spirit of God. This is an amazing concept to grasp for many and I understand that! There is great fear of the unknown! We seem to be plagued by so many well-meaning (I hope) Christians who have unknowingly (I hope) been delving in the occult and calling it “God”. We have been stung by the counterfeit, only to become disenchanted with the real! The realm of the occult is so closely connected to the realms of God! The realms of the occult, witchcraft and demonic psychic atmospheres lure many into snares, in the name of “God”!
Part of the “Early Warning System” that we need to have in place to avoid this delusion is to really know the Word of God for ourselves first and foremost! Your pastor’s knowledge of the Scriptures is helpful to you when you hear him talk on Sunday, but through the week, you need to have some rich scripture deposits in your heart in order to become an “Overcomer”!
It’s still early in ’09, why not start to commit to slicing off more dead weight in your lives, getting away from the “little foxes” and getting up early in order to seek the Lord’s heart for the day? It is a good year to turn your hope around, and realize that God is not finished with you and your life! No matter what age you are, grasp the concept that God is no respecter of person’s, but we need to obey James when is says, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” James 4:8. Notice again….you are responsible to take the “First Step”!
Lastly inventory your heart for these things:
Where you find these things, make no mistake about it, any of these above items will be enough to exempt your from the great dreams that you have. Sometimes you have to dig deep to uncover these deposits of darkness, but it is worth every ounce of energy. This is a very important step on the road to becoming “Transparent” with God first, and man second.
We have seen powerful people of God fall headlong in the past, and more recently in 2008, many have tumbled to the depths of despair and depression, after being caught in some sin that has “found them out”. The Bible warns us that “….your sin will find you out” Numbers 32:23 Is it not better to go before the Lord confessing and repenting of the sin that is so quickly binding us? Yes, you want to fly with God but it is like there are ropes that are tying you to the earth hindering you from soaring. I have a friend who keeps reminding me: “It is hard to soar like an eagle when you are surrounded by a bunch of turkeys” We need to seek out friends who will inspire us to soar higher! We need to surround ourselves with friends who will not pour water upon our fires, because they are so burdened down, that their jealousy of our freedom causes them to subtly (and sometimes not so subtly) discourage us from taking off and gaining altitude! We were born of the Spirit, and our old lives are to be put behind us, as we pursue the “New Creature” motif that we are promised in 2 Corinthians 5:17!
One more thing….in my humble experience there is one thing that I have noticed and I am greatly troubled by. We have seen first hand people who knew the Word of God very well, and were able to pull out appropriate passages with ease, who we believed walked a strong walk with God, become statistics so quickly that it has shocked us. It seems to me that in most cases there was a hidden monster within the character waiting for the appropriate time to ensnare and capture the unsuspecting believer! It is the same sin that was found in satan as he worshiped before the Lord in heaven. We are warned over and over that “Pride goes before destruction, And a haughty spirit before a fall.” Proverbs 16:18 Did you see it? We are talking about “Destruction” and a “Fall”. The main problem with pride from my observations is that it is invisible to the one who harbours it. Everyone else sees it, but the “reception of correction” is rejected, as the one in full-blown pride is blind to the imminent destruction waiting just over the next horizon to take them out. The more sure they are that they are free of pride, the more sure the imminent destruction! I pray that this brings heavy “Fear of the Lord” into every heart reading this right now. We are all perfect receptacles for the spirit of pride to come in and take up residence. As with other spiritual issues, this residing spirit is an expert at staying unseen and invisible. It is having way too much fun manipulating its host to walk as the outward humble Christian, while at the same time, oozing pride with every step! Take inventory today of this nasty spirit of pride folks, especially if you think that you are free of it! Any one of us may become the next victim of its destructive ways! Do not become “blind-sided” by this nasty killer of the anointing of God upon your lives! In almost every case of fallen Christians…..I dare say….pride will be uncovered as the major player in the formulated satanic plan to take them down! Do not be its next victim!!!
Re-Align for ’09 with new hopes, plans, commitments, and vision. God is calling you to the deep places with Him. He is seeking those who will worship Him in Spirit and in truth! He is seeking those who believe His Word wholeheartedly and want to move into the “Impossible” with Him and do mighty exploits, impossible with man! Can you feel the stirring for something so much bigger? Do you feel the youthful energy returning to your tired bones stretching you out of your comfort zone into the true “comfort zone” of Psalm 91? If not…get up before the dawn and seek Him in the early morning shadows and pre-morning quiet darkness to seek His face for your day and ultimately, “Your Life”. Can you feel the stirring? He delights in those who trust that He is who He says He is in His Word! It’s going to be a good year to be a follower of Jesus, but this could very well be the greatest year of your life! His promises are yes and amen, but you need to purge out the bitterness, unforgiveness, jealousy, covet ness, envy, discouragement, and depression in your life by going before a holy God with your heart opened, and repenting of the Lukewarmness and hidden sin in your life! He will replace all of that junk with His rich hope and renewed vision for you and your family this year! Glory to the Most High God for His “Impossible” future, tailor-made just for you! It is awesome to serve the “Great I Am”! Move into “Moments Beyond Impossible”! Hallelujah! Shalom Mighty Warriors! Go Forth in the Power of the Living Christ! Move Out, Army of God!
Just as the Israelis are marching into Gaza to annihilate the terrorists that have been tormenting them by constant rocket fire (6300 rockets fired into Israel from Gaza since 2005), it is time for us to move into the enemy’s territory and take ground for Jesus! Remember lastly that the “Gates of hell will not prevail against you!” You are more than a conqueror in Christ Jesus!
Love and Peace to all……Rob and Jody