I would like to speak to you today about one of my favorite subjects, faith.
I have found, that no matter when or how often I speak on the subject of Faith, it is ALWAYS a relevant topic for people.
Why is that?
It is because we are always going through something that requires us to choose between trusting God and His Promises, or falling into an emotional mess, despair, depression, anger...etc.
The Lord spoke to me one day with this idea:
"My Promises are NOT merely statements of OBSERVATION."
In other words, when we read the Scriptures and find a Promise that God makes to us, it is not a given, that we find this Promise as true in our lives. Actually, most of the time, we may find our "reality" is in direct conflict with the Truth of that Scripture.
Can you relate?
Here is an example:
PSALM 37:25 NLT
Once I was young, and now I am old.
Yet I have never seen the godly abandoned
or their children begging for bread.
The Promise from the Lord that is implied here, is that the Children of the Righteous will Never have to Beg for Bread.
Does this mean that no Christian in the history of the world has ever begged for bread?
Here's another example:
PSALM 30:5 NLT
Weeping may last through the night,
but joy comes with the morning.
So after a night of lamenting and sadness, if you wake up happy, you say, "oh I guess the Bible is true!" However, if you wake up still sad the Bible is false???
What about healing scriptures?
What about scriptures that Promise: Joy, Peace, Blessing, Abundance, the Holy Spirit, Power, Spiritual Authority, Signs following those who believe...this list can go on and on.
The question is: If we OBSERVE these Promises manifesting in our lives, does it make the Scriptural Promises of God true, and if we do not OBSERVE these, is the Scripture no longer relevant?
I think this example may shed light on the subject:
1 JOHN 2:2 NLT
He himself [Jesus] is the sacrifice that atones for our sins - and not only our sins but the sins of all the world.
So Jesus' sacrifice atoned or paid for the Sins of the WHOLE WORLD! Praise the Lord!
Does this mean everyone is going to Heaven?
As Christians who know our Bibles, we understand this is not the case.
So what is the factor that makes the difference for a Promise of God to become reality in our lives?
Many great things are Promised to us in the Bible, however, few if any, are automatic. No. You must grab hold of the Promise and obtain the Promise by Faith!
When I has about 13 years old, I came running down the stairs in my house. I was barefoot. At the bottom of the stairway, as you make the turn into the living room, sat my mother's sewing-table.
Some of you are cringing already!
As I flew around the corner, my bare foot came in direct contact with the leg of her sewing-table at high velocity!
Actually, the wooden table leg which was square in shape, split right between my two smallest toes on my right foot.
The pain was immediate, and immense!!!
A glorious involuntary howl erupted from my lungs for my whole neighborhood to hear!
If that wasn't bad enough, after running and dancing across the living room into my parents bedroom and flopping on their bed, when I finally looked at my foot, my pinky toe was sticking straight out, perpendicular to my foot!
Then I let out a shriek of abhorrence at the freakish site!
When my father finally got me calmed down, while gently praying, he simply pushed my pinky toe straight and back in line with the others like it was no big thing...and it was better!
I never had a problem with it after that.
So was Psalm 91 not true?
PSALM 91:11-12 NIV
11 For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways;
12 they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.
You might think, well the sewing-table was Wood not Stone. Ha!
The point of this Promise is that God's Angels will protect us, even in the simple things like stubbing your toe!
I learned two things here:
- I would not know the benefit of the Promise if I didn't know the alternative
- I had not appropriated or applied that Promise to my life yet
So if you are unaware of God's Promise or choose not to Believe, Apply and Act on that Promise...you will not walk in that Truth.
Isn't that true of our Salvation?
Jesus died for the Sins of the WHOLE WORLD, yet only those who Believe, Apply and Act on the Promise come to Salvation.
So I encourage you, take what belongs to you today. Find His Promise in the Bible for your situation. Read it. Think on it. Meditate on it. Speak it. Act on it!
JOSHUA 1:8 NIV
Keep this Book of the Law [Scripture] always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.