Happy & Blessed New Year 2014 to all my readers. I can picture the Lord Jesus, with His nail pierced loving arms, fondly greeting us & welcoming us into this New Year & New season. Remember the Lord has been in the past with us & is already there in our future (Is 46:10) to bless us & lead us in His triumph (2 Cor 2:14).
As I sought the Lord about what He has in store for us this year, He impressed upon my heart something very distinct that I would like to share here:
The Lord says in Deut 33:29“Blessed are you, Israel! Who is like you, a people saved by the Lord? He is your shield and helper and your glorious sword. Your enemies will cower before you, and you will tread on their heights.”
The above verse endorses that a people saved by the Lord are already entitled to all blessings mentioned in this verse! This verse comprises the greatest blessings we would ever need namely Salvation, Protection, Help, Glory, Deliverance &Victory. The Lord was indicating to me that every born again child of God is supposed to be walking in all these blessings, but there are many factors that keep the child of God to receive these blessings & walk in it. Satan does all that he can to hinder God’s children from walking in the fullness of these blessed plans that God wants us to walk into & he also does much to keep us from the awareness of knowing that God has already blessed us according to His riches in glory. Eph 1 talks much about these blessings & Paul prays that we would be enlightened to know of ‘the riches of the glory of His inheritance’, also calling it as ‘the riches of His grace’(verse 7) .He goes on to assure through the Holy Spirit saying ‘My God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus’. This revelation amazed me but also made me wonder what was keeping us from walking in His divine order of blessings.
Many of God’s children are unable to tap into His blessed resources & we live short of the mighty plans He has for us. God has given us all the power to live a triumphant, blessed life. When we look at the amazing way God used people like Smith Wigglesworth, Kathryn Kuhlman & many who are still being mightily used of God, these saints of God are just the same as you & me, but the only difference is that they learned to tap into the power of God & overcome every barrier. Conquering hindrances they were able to retrieve what was being held back from them. God is an impartial God & wills to bless everyone just the same, but only some have the ability to understand the heart of God & to draw from His power that is beyond measure.
“Then I will make up to you for the years That the swarming locust has eaten, The creeping locust, the stripping locust and the gnawing locust, My great army which I sent among you”(Joel 2:25). I believe God is looking forward this year to restore the years that the locusts have eaten in our lives in the past years. Somehow these ‘locusts’ have eaten up what duly belongs to us. The ‘locusts’ may have come due to our failures, unbelief or spiritual decline & it has kept us from inheriting the blessings of the Lord. But God says He will compensate for it & reward us with plenty. God is leading us into a time of restoration where we can go in & possess the blessings that are duly ours. In 1 Sam 30 we read how David was able to retrieve all that was stolen by the Amalekites who had burned down his city & taken his people captive. Satan does try to hold the people of God in captivity & quite often we become enslaved to our own faulty reasoning & unbelief .We are unable to lift up our eyes & see what is duly ours to possess it. This is Satan’s strategy to ensnare us in ignorance. But thanks to the Light of God, His word, we are now able to see what is truly due to us. After David & his people cried their hearts out, until they had no more strength to cry, ‘David strengthened himself in the Lord’(verse 6).It was in this strength that David went back to the enemies camp & retrieved all that had been stolen. His physical strength was drained in the worldly sorrow of having lost all, but then he was able to strengthen his inner man (the spirit man) through the Holy Spirit. This is how the weak can say they are strong (Joel 3:10).Worldly sorrow does strike us down to hopelessness. The Bible says, “For the sorrow that is according to the will of God produces repentance without regret, leading to salvation, but the sorrow of the world produces death.” (2 Cor 7:10) .If David had stayed in that sorrow he would have ended his life, crying, but he tapped into the power of the Holy Spirit & god gave him great strength to battle the enemy with a great slaughter & restore everything that was lost.
In the previous year(s) we may have faced great sorrows & disappointments that brought us into a sense of hopelessness & despair. A person at a hopeless situation can be compared to one who faces a dead situation. Maybe the locusts have crushed our dreams & hopes & brought us into a hopeless situation. Our situation may be totally dead, locked up in the grave with absolutely no hope. This very well describes the dead & dry scenario recorded in Ezekiel 37 of the dry bones, “I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry.”(V 2).The Lord goes on to explain to Ezekiel what these dry bones actually are. He says “Son of man, these bones are the people of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.”(V 11). The ‘people of Israel’ are none but the ones ‘saved by the Lord’ as mentioned in Deut 33:29, we first saw above in this passage. This speaks about people who have lost all hope & have come to a dead situation. Praise God, death does not exist in the sight of God, as He restores life to any dead situation or crisis we are facing. This is what He says ,12… “My people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel. 13Then you, my people, will know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. 14I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the Lord have spoken, and I have done it, declares the Lord”.
God can change any hopeless situation into hope through Christ, the hope of glory (Col 1:27).And this He does as we focus on His death on the cross & His resurrection. When Christ died on the cross the dead were raised. Math 27: 50 “And Jesus cried out again with a loud voice, and yielded up His spirit 51 and behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; and the earth shook and the rocks were split. 52 The tombs were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; 53 and coming out of the tombs after His resurrection they entered the holy city and appeared too many”. This is how the dead dry bones are raised up, through the resurrection life power of Jesus. Whatever our hopeless situation is God can raise it up as we focus on the cross. He will raise up our hopelessly dead situation into new hope this year if we can only turn our attention to his crucifixion. The Bible says Abraham believed in ‘hope against hope’ (Rom 4:18) that God would fulfill his promise. He believed even before Christ came to die on the cross. How much more should we believe after knowing about the love of Christ for us on the cross?
Therefore let us cheer up in hopeful expectation for God to move every mountain of hopelessness & bring restoration & resurrection to every situation as our God has the final say. If you think you are at the end of the rope,& given up with no hope at all, put your faith on the Lord who has no beginning or end! “Surely there is a future, And your hope will not be cut off” (Prov 23:18)
As we rest in hope this year for the Lord to do great things we will meditate further in the days to come on how God can bring restoration into our lives & how to retrieve what the enemy has stolen from our lives. May the Lord give each one of us greater grace to meditate & receive from the treasury of His Living Word!
Blessed New Year 2014!