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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Press On!

Mark 8 : 35 - 37, For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel's will save it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? NKJV
Throughout the Word of God, the Lord has repeatedly promised to take care of His people. Nevertheless, when times get hard and things become lean, we still have a tendency to doubt. Why does God allow us to go through “dry seasons” such as drought or “lean seasons” such as famine? He tells us in Deuteronomy 8 that He led the children of Israel through the wilderness and allowed them to hunger to see whether they would honor His commands or disobey them. If they kept the commands during the lean times, then God would know they had chosen to live by faith and not by sight.
God brought the children of Israel into the wilderness for a specific purpose. Even so, it was not an attempt to destroy them; He could have allowed Pharaoh to do that at the Red Sea. God transitioned the Jews from Egypt and into the wilderness to transform them from slaves into His sons and daughters, so that He could bless them in the end. Therefore, whenever God is ready to bring transformation into believer’s lives, He will allow us to enter “lean” times. If we are walking by faith, then we will allow our hearts to be kept by trusting in His Word and faithfulness. However, if we are walking in the power of the flesh through unbelief, we will harden our hearts and believe that God is out to get us.
Is the body of Christ correctly discerning the hard times we must endure? God is using them to transition us from a season of abundance and into a season of leanness so that He can perform a deeper work in us called “transformation.” God wants to perfect His work in us, but He has to complete it through our faith. This means our faith has to be put through the test to see whether we will cooperate with His will.
In Matthew 4, Jesus told Simon, Andrew, James, and John who were fishermen to follow Him, and He would make them fishers of men. Immediately, these men left their livelihoods and their families behind. In the physical realm, they were entering a transitional season into a lack of natural blessings (their willingness to leave all); nevertheless, they were entering into a large arena of spiritual blessings. They were about to see the Messiah first-hand perform the greatest miracles ever known to man. However, at the same time, they were leaving everything and everyone whom they loved. God used lack to transition them into a greater realm of His glory, and because they trusted and obeyed, Jesus transformed them into fishers of men.
Just like Egypt was not home to the Jews, this world isn’t our home. God had a Promised Land for His chosen people, and He has a land of promise for us called heaven. We’re in the midst of a mighty transition. God is transforming believers so that we’re no longer driven by the desires of the flesh, but, instead are led by the Holy Spirit. God created us as living beings or souls; however, He doesn’t intend for us to remain that way. Therefore, He sent Jesus into the world. God wants us to trust in Jesus so that we can be transformed from a living soul into a spiritual son or daughter of God who is filled with eternal life.
Nevertheless, in order for us to endure this season of leanness, we will have to possess an eternal perspective, lest we lose heart and faint while doing God’s service. Let us not grow weary, throw up our hands, and quit because of unbelief. Instead, let us trust what God has said in His Word and what He is speaking to us in this devotion and wait until the transformation is complete. God is indeed at work within our hearts, and He will do us good in the end.
The End,
Pastor Asa Dockery

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