Thy Will Be Done

We all want to be successful.  We may hear a story, read an article in a magazine, or watch a series of episodes that lead to success, and we get inspired. Inspiration that leads to success is a good thing, but inspiration that leads to making a god of the success you are pursuing can become a very bad thing! As much as we all like success, it can become a god that rules our lives. It can be a god that will lead us away from what the true God of this world desires for us. If we are not careful, the god of success will lead us to shut God out while we pursue our goals and dreams.
Consider the phrase, “Keeping up with the Joneses”. The result of that phrase is of accomplishment and success, but it can also lead to more debt, depressed feelings, and other things that were never meant to rule your life. We miss the true definition of success when we focus on what others have and on what others have done. There’s a commandment found in Exodus 20:17 that hts this issue head on.

Exodus 20:17 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbour’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbour’s

God does not want us to measure our success by what others have. In fact, chasing what others have will create a god that will lead you down a never-ending road of disappointment.

Your success is not based on the materialism that you can gain, but it’s based on following God and being content with what He has given to you!

God never intended us to keep up with our neighbor. He never intended us to chase the dreams that have been created out of someone else’s blessings. His plan has always been about us living within our means, being good stewards of what we have, and putting Him first!  Our life was never meant to be ruled by this world, but to be honest, there are more things than ever that are waging war with us to become the ruler of our lives.

There are more gods available to us today than ever, making this war harder than it’s ever been!

Jonah learned a valuable lesson.  Jonah was called to do something that no one else was called to do. He had the opportunity and the ability to bring change to a city that was messed up, but he decided he was going to do things his own way. The Bible says, “Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.” I believe that Jonah was fleeing the presence of the Lord because he didn’t want to be bothered by the conviction that is associated with God’s presence. Isn’t this why so many people run from God?   Think about it. They leave a good church, change their friends, and ignore the pastor’s call or text. They run because running makes them feel like they are accomplishing something, but the truth is, you can run, but you will always run back into the familiar presence of God. Jonah was dumping God’s will and running as far as he could go so he would not feel the conviction of ignoring God’s will.

Isn’t this what we do sometimes? We run to our Tarshish. We get busier with our career. We get busier with activities that take us away from our church attendance and our calling. We get involved in relationships that are leading us away from the presence of God. We find an activity that drowns out the voice of God calling us.

Most people run from God or fail to do what God has called them to do because there’s another god that is winning the battle!

Jonah eventually got thrown overboard, swallowed by a big fish, and spit up on the shore near Ninevah where God was leading him from the start. Jonah went through all of that because he stepped outside of God’s will.
 
One principle that sums it all up for the Christian –
Matthew 6:33
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.

The blessings you receive from the gods of this world are temporary, but the blessings that flow from His kingdom are eternal!

Every Christian needs to follow the prayer below.

Matthew 6:9–15

After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11Give us this day our daily bread.12And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.13And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

Jesus was placing the kingdom of God at the top:

  • God’s will
  • God’s provision
  • God’s forgiveness
  • God’s deliverance
    • All of God’s kingdom blessings flow from Him being at the center of your life.  Our Father which art in Heaven, Hallowed be thy name….Thy kingdom come…

This whole prayer was about placing God at His rightful place so that kingdom blessings and kingdom power would flow to us!

To experience all of God and what he wants to do in our lives, we must live out this phrase, “THY Kingdom come, THY will be done on earth as it is in heaven”.

When our earth reflects His heaven, that’s when we experience the supernatural!

The only way that Heaven can influence earth is by putting the King of the kingdom in his rightful place.

 If you want Him to influence your:

  • Marriage – Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done
  • Finances – Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done
  • Family – Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done
  • Career – Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done
  • EVERYTHING – Thy kingdom come Thy will be done.

NONE of us are worthy of it, but by His grace, Heaven can touch earth and provide a supernatural influence!

I’ll leave you with this. We want heaven to influence our needs, but will you allow heaven to influence your heart?

 

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The Right Stuff

The Right Stuff

From the beginning of time, altars have been built to present an offering to the deity of choice. History teaches us that altars were an important part of a worshippers life. This represented the place where they would commit to the god they would serve.
 
Adam and Eve taught this to their children Cain and Abel, and the day would come when they would present their own offering unto God. I am just speculating here, but I am sure they all used the same altar to present their offerings unto the Lord. With this said, I can see why Cain would become so furious! He used the same altar, but he experienced a different outcome. Even if Cain wasn’t using the family altar, he still knew how to build an altar, and even with his own altar, he experienced a different outcome. The big question is, WHY?

Genesis 4:3–4  And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord.  And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the Lord had respect unto Abel and to his offering:

This is what I believe. The answer to the WHY is not in the type of offering. The answer to the WHY is not in the amount of offering. The answer to the WHY was never about how long it took to prepare the offering. The answer to the WHY is in this one little word. It’s just one word that makes all the difference. Are you ready for it? FIRST!

Notice that Cain offered the fruit of the ground. It was not the first fruits but just plain ordinary fruit. It was either the second yield of produce or it was the third, but none of that mattered to God because it wasn’t FIRST.
I believe and still believe today that FIRST represents our trust and faithfulness to God. It simply tells Him that we trust Him to give our very best, our first, our all if we had to. FIRST simply says that God gets the very best. That’s what Abel did. He brought God the firstling.
 
In the story where the widow woman fed Elisha during the drought, we see an incredible story of God’s miraculous blessings. Elisha told this woman to bake him a cake. Most people know this story. She replied, “I only have enough for me and my son. We will eat it and then die”. The prophet said, “Bake me a cake first, and then you go ahead and do what your were planning to do”. She follows the instructions and bakes the cake for the prophet. When she returns to the barrel she finds enough meal to bake 2 more cakes. The next day she peaks in the barrel and finds that there’s enough meal to bake 2 more cakes. This happened everyday because she trusted God enough to put Him FIRST!
 
The sin in Cain’s heart started as a thought. Isn’t that where every sin comes from? Just one little thought or idea can trigger a process that leads you down the wrong path. Cain thought his sacrifice was good enough. He thought it was better than Abel’s sacrifice. He thought that he should have been blessed. He thought that giving God leftovers was good enough. He thought that if he changed the plan up a bit that no one would recognize. It was just one thought that led Cain down a path of sin and deception.

In Cain’s mind he was bringing to God what he thought was good enough, but at the end of the day, God only wanted him to trust him. He wanted him to put Him first. This simply means that you will bring what He wants and not what you have left over.

Cain’s altar was influenced by carnality which led to completely loosing it and doing what he thought he would have NEVER dreamed of doing!

Cain lived a life that was outside of God’s plan because he chose to do things his way. It’s true that our emotions will be governed by the gods we allow to rule our lives. The gods that you’re not willing to dethrone will rule your life and keep you far from God. When we are far from God, we stand the chance of doing something we thought we would have never done.

We need an altar to sacrifice our self-will and put God at the very top where He belongs!
 
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