Saturday, December 24, 2011

His Word is Coming

Psalm 105:17-21(KJV) He sent a man before them, even Joseph, who was sold for a servant: Whose feet they hurt with fetters: he was laid in iron: Until the time that his word came: the word of the LORD tried him. The king sent and loosed him; even the ruler of the people, and let him go free. He made him lord of his house, and ruler of all his substance
Have you ever felt like God gave you a dream or a vision? If you're anything like me, when that happens...I go after it 200%...I don't want to wait and end up getting frustrated because it's not working out how I think it should. What this verse tells us is that when God gives us a dream or a vision, until that word(dream or vision) is fulfilled...the same word he gave us will test us.

When we are given a vision...a purpose for our lives...we often try to jump the gun because we want it now. We become impatient. But the journey to the fulfillment of God's purpose for our lives is the process of refinement in our lives. Someone once said that we are a microwave generation for a crock pot God. When God gives you a destiny, until it happens...the very word will try you. Tried is translated from the Hebrew word tsaraph...which means to melt down, refine, test or prove true. The process is part of the word that God gives us.

Every one of us has a calling on our lives. Many are called but few are chosen...so what separates the called from the chosen? It depends on you...those who endure the times of trial and are faithful to the word that God has spoken over their lives. God promised Joseph that he would be a ruler...but Joseph had to endure much before he became a ruler.

We think that the rough patches in life are from the devil...but the Bible says that when we are called, we are tried. It doesn't matter if it is a trial or a temptation or who it comes from, what matters is your response to the trial...whether you are faithful and endure. Too often we are called but we get frustrated and give up before we are ready to fulfill our calling.
Genesis 37:5-10 Now Joseph had a dream, and when he told it to his brothers they hated him even more. 6 He said to them, “Hear this dream that I have dreamed: Behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and behold, my sheaf arose and stood upright. And behold, your sheaves gathered around it and bowed down to my sheaf.” His brothers said to him, “Are you indeed to reign over us? Or are you indeed to rule over us?” So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words. Then he dreamed another dream and told it to his brothers and said, “Behold, I have dreamed another dream. Behold, the sun, the moon, and eleven stars were bowing down to me.” But when he told it to his father and to his brothers, his father rebuked him and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall I and your mother and your brothers indeed come to bow ourselves to the ground before you?”
This is the beginning of the calling God placed on Joseph's life. The dream was made clear in the moment but everyone else rebuked him. God may have given you a calling but the people around you...even your family...they might say that you can't do it.

If you continue on in his story, Joseph's family tried to kill him, they rejected him, they turned and left him to die. In that moment, he could believe that God's word is true and coming and stand on that knowledge or he could have given up when he was left in the pit to die. In the midst of the low, Joseph still turned to God. Then, just when he thought it was all over and he was being rescued...he was sold into slavery! He could have given up then too...but he knew God. He followed and trusted in God anyway. He became the chief servant for Potiphar, things were looking up for Joseph...and then he landed in jail! It seemed like nothing was going right for Joseph. Every time things began to turn in the right direction, the rug got pulled from under him.
 
If it were me, I would have said, "God has forsaken and failed me!", but in reality...Joseph was given a purpose and until the time came when he was to fulfill that purpose...he was tried. Joseph said I'll follow you anyway...he was faithful even when it didn't look like there was hope. Then...while still in jail, Joseph interprets a dream for a prison-mate who later went to Pharaoh and told him about Joseph. Joseph interpreted the Pharaoh's dream and was released from prison.
 
Joseph passed every test...from being rejected to thrown into a pit, from slavery to being a servant, from jail with no prospects....to the 2nd in command to Pharaoh. God was with Joseph the entire time. Joseph was called to be a ruler...but unlike many of us, he understood that God had to make him a King before he could handle a kingdom. He wasn't ready to be a ruler when the word was given to him...he had to grow and endure many trials in order to become the Ruler that God wanted him to be.
 
The problems in your life are not a sign that God has forgotten you - they are evidence of God's plan for your life. Problems don't always come from the devil...they come into our lives to build our character, substance and faith. How you handle your prison...your pit...your rejection...determines whether or not you see the palace.
 
We want to arrive...we want the destination, the end result...but if He gave it to us now, we wouldn't be able to handle it. Count it all joy...it's part of the process.
James 1:2-4 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.
Remember, it will not last forever. God's plan is for you to overcome. If you give up now, you will never see the palace...you will never fulfill the calling God has on your life! Don't give up on your problems, your purpose, your faith or your God. God sees you as a strong person if he trusts you with adversity.

If you go to the gym every day for 6 months and tell your trainer that in 6 months you want to look like Arnold Schwarzenegger but you only bench the bar and not add resistance...then in 6 months you will look exactly the same as you do right now. Resistance builds strength. God allows resistance so that you will be able to handle the kingdom he has for you.

Remember when you are in the pit...that his name is Immanuel and he is with you always. Don't give up. His word is coming!

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