The Revelation Thomas Missed

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Most Christians have heard of the story of Doubting Thomas. When we doubt, we are often encouraged not to be a “Doubting Thomas” and instead to believe God. We’ve read the account of Thomas in the bible. Jesus rose from the dead, and many of the disciples were reporting how they had seen Him. Thomas emphatically declared that unless he saw Jesus with his own eyes he wouldn’t believe.

Later, Jesus appears in the midst of the disciples and shows Thomas the holes in his hands from the nails. He tells Thomas to stick his hand in His side and proves to Thomas that He is flesh and blood. Then Jesus says this to Thomas:

“…Thomas because thou has seen me, thou has believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.” – John 20:29

I woke up in the middle of the night, and God began showing me some truths about myself. He showed me where I was missing it in believing Him and in doubting Him. He encouraged me that I still had in me the seeds and the growth that He put in me from my mother’s womb.

I got excited knowing God was speaking to me and revealing to me some of what was in my heart–both good and bad. At the same time, the scripture above kept rolling through my mind. I started forming ideas about the meaning of this scripture, but for a little while as God was speaking to me, I avoided looking the scripture up to remind myself of the exact wording.

What I didn’t realize at the time was that God put this scripture in my mind, and He prompted me to take a look at it. In fact, God was giving me understanding of a scripture most people misinterpret.

But I doubted the new understanding.

Finally, I said, okay, Lord. If this scripture really means what I think it does, then the word “yet” will be in italics when I look the scripture up. That’s the only way it could mean what I think it means.

Let me explain for those who might not have learned this yet. The bible translators try their best to make the bible as clear as possible for English readers. The New Testament was originally written in Greek.

When a sentence translated from Greek to English doesn’t seem to make sense, the translator will add a word or two to make the meaning of the sentence plainer. Unfortunately, they can only go on their own intellect. Sometimes God’s original meaning can get jumbled in the process.

The translators wanted to indicate where they added words, so in the King James Version of the bible, the added words are in italics. When God gave me understanding of John 20:29, I knew that the italicized word was incorrect to the true meaning of the scripture. It was “proof” to me that God was leading me.

Let’s look at the scripture again, and I’ll explain what it seems to be saying according to the translation.

“…Thomas because thou has seen me, thou has believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.” – John 20:29

Here’s a paraphrase. Thomas, because you see me with your eyes you believe, but blessed are people who have seen nothing YET believe.

These people don’t see anything, but they still believe. The word “yet” makes it a blessing in spite of promise. If “yet” doesn’t belong in the original text, which it doesn’t, then this sentence must have a different meaning.

The scripture should read: Thomas because thou has seen me, thou has believed: blessed are they that have not seen and have believed.

Most Christians think they are commanded from this scripture to see nothing and hold onto faith with everything they’ve got. They think that seeing nothing is what having faith is, that it’s the definition of faith. Seeing nothing and holding on until you see something.

Jesus didn’t say that at all.

Let me say that again. Jesus didn’t say to Thomas see nothing but believe. Jesus said “Not Seen” and believe. To understand this better, let me remind you of another scripture that we all know.

2 Corinthians 4:18 says, “While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”

For simple terms, let me say it like this. There are two types of substances in the universe. There is no “nothingness” just as there’s no non-belief. You can’t believe in nothing. You either believe the truth or you believe a lie.

There is the “seen” and the “not seen.” One is in the physical world, what we see with our eyes and what we experience with our five senses. Then there is the one that is spiritual, which we interact with spiritually.

The bible says in 2 Corinthians that we don’t look on the seen things. We look on the unseen. The unseen things exist, but they cannot be seen with the natural eye, unless of course, God manifests something in the natural. But it is still a spiritual happening.

Jesus was telling Thomas, don’t rely on the seen world for your information, Thomas. The real blessing is in seeing the “not seen.” What is the “not seen”? It’s when God speaks to your heart, when He gives you a vision, when you receive revelation, any connection with the Lord on a spiritual level, that’s seeing the “not seen.”

When you hear God tell you something, you choose to believe it. It’s that simple. What Jesus shared with Thomas was a clue to what was coming when He sent the Holy Spirit to us. He was sharing how the Lord would interact with His people going forward.

Jesus gave a similar hint when He spoke with the woman at the well in John 4. Jesus told the woman that there would come a time when people won’t worship the Lord here on this mountain or in Jerusalem but people will worship the Lord in spirit and in truth. Mark gives a teaching that opens these scriptures up even more so that we learn the true place of worship is in our own heart.

In John 20, Jesus wasn’t telling Thomas we have to be blind and still believe. Granted, we do believe God despite the circumstances and even if we don’t know what to do or don’t see the way out of a situation, we trust Him. However, that isn’t the subject of John 20:29.

I can go on and write about Hebrews 11:1 where it says “faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” but you get the picture. Jesus was telling us we have a new language with Him that is a spiritual experience, and it will bless us. We walk by that leading because He is faithful to speak to us and show us the way. He doesn’t leave us blind.

Jesus was saying by My Spirit I will show you and speak to you and lead you. You will see the spiritual and you will believe and you will be blessed. Such an awesome revelation! God is good.

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Please check out my book Simply Led. I tell the story of how I learned to hear God’s voice and talk about my journey toward a closer walk with Him. I think you’ll enjoy it.

Check out some of our other teachings on this website to gain a better understanding of what God is like and how He made you to be. You can also watch us on YouTube, where we share videos on a weekly basis.

*Some of the above links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase after clicking through, I will receive a small commission. This at no additional cost to you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Expect Favor

praying

Mark and I were discussing a movie snippet we’d seen about the story of Esther (Book of Esther chapters 1-10). In the movie, the king looks so severe as Esther dares to come before him without being summoned.

To give you a little background, in case you haven’t read the book of Esther or haven’t for a while, Esther was a Jewish woman, who was chosen among many other women to be King Ahasuerus‘ wife. The bible says that even before Esther entered the year long preparation, she was “fair and beautiful” (Esther 2:7).

The bible states of Esther, “And Esther obtained favor in the sight of all them that looked upon her” (v. 15). Anyone who looked at Esther gave her favor. The king loved Esther above all the women. He gave her grace and favor and made her queen (v. 17).

Later, the king’s advisors turned him against the Jews so that the king decreed that all Jews must be killed. At the time, King Ahasuerus didn’t know his wife was a Jew. Mordecai, Esther’s cousin who raised her, called on Esther to go to the king and ask that the Jews be saved.

Esther immediately recited the law to Mordecai, saying anyone who goes before the king who wasn’t summoned would be put to death unless the king extended his scepter to spare them. Esther was afraid to go to the king because he hadn’t called her in a month.

This is where Esther went wrong. Esther thought she was bound by the laws of the land. I’m not saying she should just flaunt the law and break it. I’m saying she thought it bound her in the same way it bound everyone else. Esther forgot about favor.

Many people like to cite the story of Esther as a reason to fast, so they can obtain favor in a given situation. I submit to you that Esther didn’t have to fast at all. This statement might shock you, but hear me out.

Look at those scriptures again. Esther came in the door already having favor—with everybody. The king loved her and gave her favor and grace. Can you imagine what his real reaction must have been when she walked into his presence. He’d already had the humiliation of a beautiful wife not wanting to come when he summoned her. His first wife felt she was too good to go.

The king now had a beautiful wife who was eager to see him before he called. Even on a human level, that must have been flattering. The bible says he loved her and made her queen. His much loved and beautiful wife already had favor with him.

Esther’s real reason for fasting wasn’t to save the Jews but to see past her own fears to the favor that was already in place in her life. Remember what Mortecai said to Esther before she fasted. He said:

“…and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” (Es. 4:14).

Mortecai could have said, you’ve come to the kingdom because God knew the Jews would come into danger, and you’re the one who will get them out of it. You were put in place with favor to save them!

When Esther walked into the king’s presence, he was thrilled to see her. He was eager to do her bidding. Not because she had fasted but because of who she was.

Do you see that? Esther was already in position, and so are we. We’ve been encamped round about with the favor of God. All we need to do is put our trust in Him and expect the favor to be present.

Psalm 5:12 says, “For You, O LORD, will bless the righteous; With favor You will surround him as with a shield.” You’ve already been given favor. It’s not something we have to strive for, beg for, work toward. God favors us and prepares the way.

Look for the favor of God because you already have it.

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Please check out my book Simply Led. I tell the story of how I learned to hear God’s voice and talk about my journey toward a closer walk with Him. I think you’ll enjoy it.

Check out some of our other teachings on this website to gain a better understanding of what God is like and how He made you to be. You can also watch us on YouTube, where we share videos on a weekly basis.

*Some of the above links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase after clicking through, I will receive a small commission. This at no additional cost to you.

 

 

When God Promises

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Photo courtesy of Mark Conatser

We often make promises or say something we intend to do. Difficult circumstances arise, and we readjust what we promised or said. Others make us promises. They say they will help us, but they let us down. People get busy. They change their minds. An argument might break out while we’re waiting, and the person who made the commitment is too angry to follow through.

God keeps His promises.

In fact, God doesn’t speak any idle words. Ever.

More than a year ago, my heart began to break. I went to the Lord to find out what was wrong. This kind of thing had happened before, a heaviness that I couldn’t explain or track where it was coming from. I went to the Lord, and He showed me the origin and the solution.

In this particular situation, I couldn’t hear God clearly. I prayed in tongues. As I paced and prayed, I began to see someone in my life. Someone I loved. I began to see the negative situation this person was involved in. It hurt me to my core, and I kept praying for release.

Later that evening, I went to Mark and confessed the situation. We prayed together. We prayed in tongues. Mark gave the interpretation. Mark said that God would strengthen this person to receive the truth.

The very next week following this intense prayer, the person contacted me, revealing what I had seen in prayer. Over the following months, nothing changed. The situation seemed to grow worse.

More than a year later, the person was on my heart again. I prayed. God told me the truth would come up from inside this person’s heart. It wasn’t something that I or anyone else would reveal. Sometimes (often really) people can’t hear you. You must leave it to God to reveal the truth to their heart.

This person contacted me after so long, and I began to see that God was moving. But the thought came that it’s kind of too late, isn’t it? That hurt. Then God began to minister to me.

He showed me that what He says isn’t just idle words. It’s not for show. It’s not just a wish and an empty hope. What God says is truth. I began to think about how God had a plan to redeem man to Himself. Did you know His plan took four thousand years (4,000)?

From the time Adam and Eve were thrown out of the Garden of Eden until Jesus came into the world was four thousand years. How many times did it look dark, like God’s plan wouldn’t come to pass? How much evil happened in this world? How hopeless it must have seemed to those who had heard the promise.

Yet, God stayed at His plan, working out the details.

What God promises you isn’t idle. He’s not just trying to cheer you up falsely. He doesn’t speak a word to your heart just to give you temporary warm and fuzzies. He’s Truth.

Why did He say this person would receive the truth? Why would this person receive the truth if it was too late? What is truth for? Galatians 5:1 says, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.”

This person will learn the truth so that they can be free! In their heart. Even if they are living the consequences of bad choices, freedom in your heart and mind is incomparable.

The reason to be shown the truth is for freedom.

God spoke this truth to my heart this morning, and I bless Him for speaking to me. He’s good and faithful. I think of So Will I, a Hillsong worship song that I love. The lyrics are inspired by God. I’m sure of it.

God of creation
There at the start
Before the beginning of time
With no point of reference
You spoke to the dark
And fleshed out the wonder of light
And as You speak
A hundred billion galaxies are born
In the vapour of Your breath the planets form
If the stars were made to worship so will I
I can see Your heart in everything You’ve made
Every burning star
A signal fire of grace
If creation sings Your praises so will I
God of Your promise
You don’t speak in vain
No syllable empty or void
For once You have spoken
All nature and science
Follow the sound of Your voice
And as You speak
A hundred billion creatures catch Your breath
Evolving in pursuit of what You said
If it all reveals Your nature so will I
I can see Your heart in everything You say
Every painted sky
A canvas of Your grace
If creation still obeys You so will I
If the stars were made to worship so will I
If the mountains bow in reverence so will I
If the oceans roar Your greatness so will I
For if everything exists to lift You high so will I
If the wind goes where You send it so will I
If the rocks cry out in silence so will I
If the sum of all our praises still falls shy
Then we’ll sing again a hundred billion times
God of salvation
You chased down my heart
Through all of my failure and pride
On a hill You created
The light of the world
Abandoned in darkness to die
And as You speak
A hundred billion failures disappear
Where You lost Your life so I could find it here
If You left the grave behind You so will I
I can see Your heart in everything You’ve done
Every part designed in a work of art called love
If You gladly chose surrender so will I
I can see Your heart
Eight billion different ways
Every precious one
A child You died to save
If You gave Your life to love them so will I
Like You would again a hundred billion times
But what measure could amount to Your desire
You’re the One who never leaves the one behind

 

God is so faithful, my friend. Trust Him. If He made you a promise, He will keep it. The fulfillment of what He said isn’t dependent on you but dependent on Him. He doesn’t go back on His word. He’s not subject to mood swings or hold grudges.

Let this be you, found in Luke 1:45:

“And blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance of those things which were told her from the Lord.”

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Please check out my book Simply Led. I tell the story of how I learned to hear God’s voice and talk about my journey toward a closer walk with Him. I think you’ll enjoy it.

Check out some of our other teachings on this website to gain a better understanding of what God is like and how He made you to be. You can also watch us on YouTube, where we share videos on a weekly basis.

*Some of the above links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase after clicking through, I will receive a small commission. This at no additional cost to you.

 

Giving God Opportunity

soldier-on-the-road

Very often we are so laser focused on walking in faith and being a soldier for God, we forget to let God minister to us. We choose our words carefully, intending to only speak words of faith. We want to look, speak, act like we don’t have doubts or fears. Any false move, and we might lose ground. We certainly don’t want anyone else to know how much the pressures of life are getting to us.

Maybe that’s not been your experience. It’s been mine more than once. I get caught up in thoughts of staying on target, staying focused, believing God. My belief morphs into an act of my will. I’m peddling as hard as I can, or should I say treading water as hard as I can.

Okay, let me stop with the metaphors and speak plainly. Sometimes, I’m worried about an issue. I want to be in faith. I feel guilty inside because I’m not. I think about talking to Mark, but I don’t want to burden him. Then the pressure gets to me, and I “explode.” I tell him about my problem.

And then I get free.

In the moments that I talk to Mark, I suddenly become very aware of the Lord, moving and speaking to me in my heart. My joy, which is from the Lord, flows out from Him. I get encouraged. I start worshiping the Lord in my heart, even while I’m still speaking to Mark about the frustrations.

I begin to see–as I’ve seen a hundred times before–that I fell into the pattern of being so busy being a warrior I forgot to be a child. In my time of weakness, God hurried to show me His strength. What I have concluded from this is, the act of “complaining” to Mark actually helped me to let go of my will and submit to God.

I’m not saying one has to complain. I know we can and should submit to God continually, even in a silent time alone with Him. We can submit to Him actively at every moment of our lives, whether in conversation with others or not. It’s just that when I got in that rut, I couldn’t seem to submit.

I didn’t know I wasn’t submitting. I didn’t know I was holding more tightly to what I thought was right more than holding onto Him and letting Him lead me. I got off track while doing good. I wasn’t receiving God’s help because I was focused too much on me standing. Too me-focused.

In “giving up” by talking to Mark about my rampant emotions and fears, I let go. Then God, Who is ever ready to help, swooped in to release that joy and peace He always wants to give.

Giving up my soldier attitude helped me to give God an opportunity to help me. He centered me again, fine-tuned my focus, and got me back on track. Unfortunately, this happens to me far more than I like. But life is a journey, and God walks it with us step-by–step.

Give Him a chance, and He’ll straighten your path as well.

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Please check out my book Simply Led. I tell the story of how I learned to hear God’s voice and talk about my journey toward a closer walk with Him. I think you’ll enjoy it.

Check out some of our other teachings on this website to gain a better understanding of what God is like and how He made you to be. You can also watch us on YouTube, where we share videos on a weekly basis.

 

*Some of the above links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase after clicking through, I will receive a small commission. This at no additional cost to you.

Humility: Knowing Who You Are

Father and son having fun on summer holidays

Many people think putting yourself down or lower than another is true humility. I’ve read posts from people who say, “I’m humble enough to realize that I’m not…” You fill in the blank. But that’s not true humility.

True humility is knowing who you are in Jesus. It’s saying about yourself what the Lord says about you. Repeating what God has said about you is an act of submission to Him. You put His opinion above your own.

I remember a song many years ago that went, “I’m just a nobody, trying to tell everybody about somebody who can save everybody.” It’s catchy, but it’s not true. And it is pride. When we insist on our own views over what the Lord said, it’s our own pride and non-submission to Him asserting itself.

The Lord said in 1 Peter 2:9 (NIV):

“But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”

If you are the King’s child, then you are royalty. Period. There’s no getting around that truth. Your pride should come from knowing who you are in Jesus. Your pride and confidence isn’t directly in who you are but Whose you are. You submit to what He says about you, and walk in that.

The bible calls us blessed, overcomers, chosen, full of the power of God, redeemed, forgiven, and much more. When we get a revelation of who we are, we walk in humility. But not only that, we walk in power.

Years ago, when God delivered me from depression, I had a vision of the Lord having His arms wrapped around me. While in His embrace, the two of us flexed, pushing our arms outward. When we did that, depression could no longer hold onto me. It slipped away.

Over the following four months, depression tried extra hard to take control again. I sometimes questioned in my mind–am I delivered? Then I remembered, no, I was delivered. God did it, and it truly happened. Depression still couldn’t hold on.

What stood out to me with this experience is that I didn’t have to speak to the devil that might have been trying to put this on me. I didn’t rebuke him. I didn’t even command depression to go.

The instant I knew that I was free, I became free. When you believe contrary to what God says,  you experience contrary to what God says. And when you believe contrary, you speak contrary. The minute I submitted to what God showed me, I was free. That’s why we are to be humble. Because we can’t see the truth on our own in order to walk in the liberty Jesus bought for us.

When we submit to God in our hearts, our lives become a lot simpler. Challenges get smaller in our eyes even when to the rest of the world they seem to be insurmountable.

I’ll give you another example of how submitting to God brings true humility and then power to change a situation. Mark and I were dealing with a problem a few days ago. The pressure of having this thing resolved in time weighed down on us.

I was tempted to speak out in frustration the worries and fears, the hurt and confusion I felt in my emotions. I couldn’t understand why this thing was taking so long to be resolved. I wanted to cry out, “Why, Lord why? Why isn’t it already over!”

But at that time, God had already been talking to me about what happens when I turn to Him in my heart and then speak that out of my mouth. More about that in another post. So, I decided I didn’t want to blurt out my frustration.

When Mark came home from work, I said, “I know Jesus is with us in this situation. I know He is right by our side, and that we will see His favor. I just don’t understand why it hasn’t shown up yet.”

In that instant, I sensed the power of the first part of that statement. Those words were a reflection of my heart being submitted to God. I know Jesus is with us in this situation. In my heart, God and me had settled it. These words were true no matter what the situation looked like.

That is submission to God. Not the words exactly but the heart-yielding that prompted the words. In that moment, I grew calmer about the problem. I felt encouraged, and I received hope that we would gain favor with God and man.

You can receive help and hope in a hopeless situation when you humble your heart to God. But it is more than just saying words. It’s a heart matter. It’s letting Him take lead in your heart. Then and only then will your words follow with power. And you will receive encouragement and comfort as you await the manifestation of the answer.

True humility doesn’t start with you speaking a bunch of positive words or quoting scripture. No, it starts in the heart, where you put aside what you think, and embrace what He has said about you.

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Please check out my book Simply Led. I tell the story of how I learned to hear God’s voice and talk about my journey toward a closer walk with Him. I think you’ll enjoy it.

Check out some of our other teachings on this website to gain a better understanding of what God is like and how He made you to be. You can also watch us on YouTube, where we share videos on a weekly basis.

 

*Some of the above links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase after clicking through, I will receive a small commission. This at no additional cost to you.

 

 

 

 

The New Place of Worship

Where-Worship-thumbnail

The woman at the well asked Jesus where the proper place for worshiping God was located. In her mind, she was thinking Mount Sinai. The Jews were claiming the true place of worship was in Jerusalem. Many Christians think of God off in the distance, and they direct their focus outwardly when they are looking to the Lord.

Where is the true place of worship?

In this week’s video, Mark is continuing his series on the voice of God. He will talk about where the true place of worship is and where we are to look to the Lord.

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Please check out my book Simply Led. I tell the story of how I learned to hear God’s voice and talk about my journey toward a closer walk with Him. I think you’ll enjoy it.

Check out some of our other teachings on this website to gain a better understanding of what God is like and how He made you to be. You can also watch us on YouTube, where we share videos on a weekly basis.

 

*Some of the above links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase after clicking through, I will receive a small commission. This at no additional cost to you.

 

Dark Corners

DarkCorners-thumbnail

Are there parts of your heart and mind you hide from God? Do you think God wouldn’t want any part of that mess? Or He’s too holy to come close? Mark answers these questions in this week’s video. He talks about finding God’s light in the darkest corners of his heart and how God shines from the inside out, to help you get free.

Mark is continuing the series on the Voice of God. In each video, Mark shares what God said to him or showed him as he learned to know God more intimately in his heart.

While these videos are numbered, and Mark likes to share in a way that builds from one word to the next, you can watch them in any order you wish. You can watch the videos from YouTube, or click the latest video below.

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Please check out my book Simply Led. I tell the story of how I learned to hear God’s voice and talk about my journey toward a closer walk with Him. I think you’ll enjoy it.

Check out some of our other teachings on this website to gain a better understanding of what God is like and how He made you to be. You can also watch us on YouTube, where we share videos on a weekly basis.

 

*Some of the above links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase after clicking through, I will receive a small commission. This at no additional cost to you.

 

 

 

Who Is Faithful–You or God?

Teamwork couple climbing helping hand

God’s Faithfulness is Not Based On Yours

God is faithful. Even when you are not faithful, He remains faithful. He is true to Himself and true to you. He will answer no matter how many times you turn from Him and mess up.

Maybe you pray to Him and ask Him for certain things and then immediately go to figuring it out all for yourself. Maybe you immediately stop trusting Him. Maybe you want to improve. You know you’re doing these things, or you know you have this character flaw. Something you’re doing that you know is sin.

You just want to improve. You want to grow stronger. You want to be that faithful person who trusts God and believes Him. You want to stand firm. You wan to be that person, but time and time again you find that you’re falling away.

You get motivated today. Tomorrow you do whatever and turn away. Then you get motivated again and talk to the Lord. Then you fall into doing it yourself. If you will just keep your hope in the Lord, He will come through because He is faithful.

His help to you is not based on whether or not you’re faithful to Him or whether or not you continue to look at Him. He knows how to draw you. Right now, today, at this very second, God is working on your heart. He is retraining your heart to trust Him. He knows He is your hope.

Even if you don’t know that God is your hope, He is. Even if you know it now but in an hour when things get hard you don’t know it–God is your hope! Just keep your hope in Him. He will build your trust in Him because He is ever faithful.

The bible talks about Abraham being so faithful and how he didn’t consider his body, especially when we’re going through a physical ailment. I talk a lot about this because healing is important to me.

Abraham’s Faithlessness is a Good Example

We look at Abraham and read the verse that says:

“He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness[a] of Sarah’s womb.” – Romans 4:19

Abraham believed God’s promise that he would be the father of many nations when he didn’t have kids and was old. What I liked to look at in that story is how Abraham started out.

God called Abraham out of his country. He told him to leave everything behind–family, friends, everything and to just go out basically on faith. At that point, God didn’t give Abraham specific instructions about where he was going. What did Abraham do? He messed up right away. He took Lot, his nephew, and that caused a lot of issues some time later.

Abraham didn’t trust God’s plan for his life at the beginning. He didn’t trust God to take care of Lot after he was gone, so he took him along. Think about that. How many times are acting as other people’s source because we don’t trust them to God? But that’s a subject for another day.

Over the course of Abraham’s journey, he lied, he schemed. He was afraid for his life, not trusting God to keep it. He did things his way without consulting God. He lied to two kings about who Sarah was. He didn’t trust that God would take care of him and his wife.

But God was ever faithful.

When Abraham didn’t trust God, and when he messed up, when he disobeyed God, God didn’t say you screwed up, Abraham. I’m going to leave you here. Forget it. I change my mind. God is not like that.

God was faithful. He knew it would take many years for Abraham to get a clue. He knew it would take a while for Abraham to fully trust Him and to have faith in Him. God didn’t start out on day one dropping a child on Abraham and ask him to sacrifice him because he trusted Him.

Abraham went through a long process of learning bit by bit how to trust God. Why did he learn that? Why was he able to learn to trust God so strongly that he didn’t look at his own body? It’s because God is faithful.

God was faithful to train Abraham’s heart to trust Him. God was faithful.

God Never Forgets a Prayer He Wants to Answer

That’s what you should remember today. Even if you asked God something twenty or thirty years ago, and you still haven’t seen the answer, if it’s within God’s plan, He will bring it to pass. He will.

If you can believe right now He is working in the inside of your heart to help you to trust Him, it will help you.

You want to be stronger? Maybe you have a character flaw, and you just want it to change. You keep going to God about it, but somehow you’re not receiving or you’re not believing. Maybe you keep turning back to that thing after you’ve talked to the Lord.

Perhaps there’s a habit that you’re seeking God’s help for, but somehow you’re not receiving deliverance. Say you have that habit and you give it up today and you pick it up tomorrow. You pick it up this hour, and the next hour you lay it down. Over and over, you keep seeing yourself fail and fail. You’re just so frustrated.

I want you to remember that God is faithful. He is right there with you in that struggle–with you. He knows the end. He knows at the end of that thing you’re going to lay it down. Why? Because He is training you in your hear to trust Him that you can lay it down.

The day will come. You may not know when, but God does. He trusts that it will come and it will happen. He knows that He is never going to give up on you no matter how many times you mess up.

Change Your Focus

Don’t focus on how you have messed up and how many times you have failed. Don’t focus on how unfaithful you’ve been to God. Don’t focus on how unfaithful you’ve been to trust and believe Him.

Think about how faithful God is to you. He’ll never give up. He will always train your heart. In fact, He is training it right this second. Right now, God is speaking some things to your heart and mind. He is speaking the truth.

Even if you are convinced contrary to the word and contrary to His desire, He knows how to bring you around to learning the truth. That’s what the bible means when it says:

“And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” – John 8:32

Let’s pause right there. You WILL know the truth. How awesome is that? Not you might know the truth. You will know the truth. You may think that some things you believe right now are truth and they’re not. God knows He’s bringing you around. He’s teaching you what truth is.

As He brings you around, you’re getting freer and freer. At some point, you’ll lay that habit down because you’ll know the truth, you’ll believe the truth, and it will make you free.

So be encouraged today. Know that God is faithful. Even when you’re not faithful, God is faithful. Right now, today, right this instant, He is teaching you gently, little by little, to be faithful to Him. God is the one who will teach you to be faithful to Him.

Focus on Me or God?

I like to concentrate on God’s attributes and not my own. Where I’m missing it, I don’t want to just look at that. I want to focus on God and how He never misses it. He is able to help me to always triumph (2 Cor. 2:14).

He’s helping me right now. He’s doing it right now.

If I’m messing up, and if I have a habit that I’m trying to lay down, but I keep picking it up and I talk to the Lord about it. Then I pick it up. I look to Him and then I look back to me over and over again.

I’m going to focus on Jesus.

I’m going to focus on Jesus’ perfection. That’s what God is looking at–His ability. His plan for you. He sees that end result where you are strong. Where you are walking like Him, talking like Him. When you are like Him.

God is seeing that end, and He is taking you through the steps. He knows the steps already that you need to take to get to that expected end (Jer. 29:11). So He’s taking you through it.

Focus on God. Focus on His faithfulness. He is faithful to take you through. Let that encourage your heart today.

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Please check out my book Simply Led. I tell the story of how I learned to hear God’s voice and talk about my journey toward a closer walk with Him. I think you’ll enjoy it.

Check out some of our other teachings on this website to gain a better understanding of what God is like and how He made you to be. You can also watch us on YouTube, where we share videos on a weekly basis.

 

*Some of the above links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase after clicking through, I will receive a small commission. This at no additional cost to you.

 

A Practical Use for Tongues

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What do you think about tongues? Are they useful? Needful for today? Mark answers these questions in this week’s video. He explains how you can hear from God and learn to walk in sync with the Holy Spirit using tongues. He’s continuing the series on the Voice of God. In each video, Mark shares what God said to him as he learned to know God more intimately in his heart.

While these videos are numbered, and Mark likes to share in a way that builds from one word to the next, you can watch them in any order you wish. You can watch the videos from YouTube, or click the latest video below.

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Please check out my book Simply Led. I tell the story of how I learned to hear God’s voice and talk about my journey toward a closer walk with Him. I think you’ll enjoy it.

Check out some of our other teachings on this website to gain a better understanding of what God is like and how He made you to be. You can also watch us on YouTube, where we share videos on a weekly basis.

 

*Some of the above links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase after clicking through, I will receive a small commission. This at no additional cost to you.