Your Dream is Worth Writing Down!
“After this, the word of the Lord came to Abram in a vision: “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your very great reward.” (Genesis 15:1).
Your Dream is Worth Writing Down!
Good Morning and welcome as we begin this week. Before I start our teaching, I would like to give my respect and honor to the men and women who died while serving in the U.S military. I also thank those who died, both civilian and military, in defense of freedom. Your sacrifice helped to make this land free. We are able to freely serve our Creator with worship and praise.
My thoughts and prayers go towards families who sacrificed by sending off their loved ones. There were 620,000 soldiers killed in the Civil War and many more in all the other wars. My thoughts and prayers are also for those still serving our country. Thank God for what this country stands for. Let us never forget the great sacrifice many provided this great nation. We were given the freedom to live without pressure under tyranny. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
Let’s talk a little about what we need to meditate on this week and encourage one another in our Lord Jesus Christ. I pray that you are enjoying the good news of the gospel and learning how to provoke one another in the Christian way. We need to always strive to be better in our race of faith and Christian living.
I want to begin this week with how to understand wisdom over fear and anxiety. Our world is so overwhelmed by the forces of evil. The love and peace that God intended mankind to know, has been replaced by hatred, jealousy, immorality, and anger. We are constantly surrounded by the same negative, trash talking. When you wake up each morning and turn on the news, you hear it. You also hear it from the people talking around you on a daily basis. The noise you hear sounds like the smell of rotten garbage. What happened to the old respective ways and manners? What happened to honor and forgiveness? Love and peace? We seem to be living in a blaming world that is so full of hate for one another.
In one sentence, our environment is out of control. The pain of broken marriages and families has touched us all. We can see the fear and anxiety (even in our own flesh and blood) as the enemy shadows our lives. The consequences of sexual promiscuity stare us in the face. We wonder, will it ever stop?
Jesus tells a story that points to the solution to our messed up environment. The story is about a father who had two sons. One day, not long after he had asked his father for his share of the inheritance, the younger son left home and went to a distant country where he wasted his wealth in wild living.
After he had spent everything, he became so hungry that he longed to eat the pig’s food. Let’s read the Scripture to explain our story more:
When he came to his senses, he said, “How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.” So he got up and went to his father (Luke 15:17-20a).
What a revealing passage this is. “When he came to his senses.” It lets us know that the son became aware of his poverty. It also reveals that the son believed that his need could be met. Furthermore, he trusted enough in his father’s goodness to return and ask for forgiveness.
My friends today, God is well acquainted with the insanity of our world. He, Himself, through His Son Jesus, is the only solution to our problems. He has taken the initiative to restore us back to the garden atmosphere with the gift of His presence, His fellowship, and the freedom to obey Him.
One thing for sure is that He will not force you to accept the new environment that He offers. Just like the father of the wayward son, He waits for you to come to your senses and admit your sins and your need of His forgiveness. And then, only then, can He bring sense to your world. Otherwise, you can come and go as you please and may never find the peace of mind that is in His Kingdom.
Listen to what I am saying today. God dealt with the problem of a polluted environment in Abram’s life by asking him to leave everything (Genesis 12:1-4a). Why? It is because God knew that Abram’s relationship with Him would be compromised by the negative influence of his family and friends.
Just take a few moments now to examine your environment. How is your environment as you look at it? Is it still polluted with the negative things of life? Is your environment uplifting or degrading? Why are you still enjoying wallowing in the pig-pen? As my natural father who is with the Lord says, “He started to smell like them pigs! And eat with the pigs.” That is not what God has intended for us in this life’s journey. Life’s got to be better than what you are still socializing with.
Does your environment enrich your spiritual life? Does it distract you from the work of God’s Spirit in your heart? The crises in your life must be addressed by the Spirit of God.
I pray that today is the day that you will come to your senses and make the Lord God as Lord and King of your life.
Here is another question for you to think about. I know I asked myself this question regarding the earlier years of my life: Is obedience to God the norm for those with whom you spend your days? If not, does rebellion and disobedience characterize the lifestyles of your closest friends? Remember this statement because it will come back and hit you right in your circumstances: You will become like those whom you associate with the most. Whomever you hang around with you will become! It was Moses who instructed the Israelites to immerse themselves in God’s commandments.
You know, it is our yesterday that presents irreparable things to us. It is true that we have lost the opportunities which will never return. You see, the beginning of anxiety is the end of faith, and the beginning of a true faith is the end of anxiety. God can transform past destructive anxiety into a constructive thoughtfulness for the future. Just leave the irreparable past in His hands. Step out into the irresistible future with Him.
Now, I am so settled in my faith that there is nothing that can separate me and my family from the love of God. We are determined to stay in His environment for the rest of our lives, until He returns.
So let’s continue studying and finish up today’s principle #3 of our vision. Have you ever asked yourself, “Who am I?” You must secure for yourself the answer to this question. Without the answer, it will be difficult to write a plan for your life because such a plan is directly tied to knowing who you really are. You will never become really successful in your life if you don’t have a clear idea of your own identity in God.
You see, there are many of us that have become what other people want us to be. It is because we have not yet discovered our unique, irreplaceable identity. Yet, it is knowing your true identity that gives you the courage to write your life plan.
Now the next question that you must know how to answer is: “Where am I going?” Once you learn God’s purpose, you can start planning effectively. You will be able to plan with focus. Did you know that a vision becomes a plan when it is captured, flushed out, and written down?
Take time to read Proverbs 16:1, 9. God leaves the planning up to the heart of the person, but He will provide the explanations as to how the vision will be accomplished. The plan that is in your heart is the documentation of a future that is not yet finished. But when you write down a plan, it’s a description of the end of your life, and not the beginning.
For that is why God says, “You make the plan and I will explain how it can be paid for, who is going to work with it, and where the resources and faculties are going to come from. Just leave that part to Me. All you have to do is put that plan down.”
You should always acknowledge God’s work in your life. Remember what Nehemiah said: “I also told them about the gracious hand of my God upon me and what the king had said to me.” (Nehemiah 2:18). You see, I like the fact that Nehemiah told them that. He gave credit to God for the vision, and in the process also built up the faith of those who would work on the project.
The vision needed to be passed along to them. The workers would need to exercise their own faith if they were to fulfill their personal visions within this larger vision that God had given to Nehemiah. That statement also shows that Nehemiah was so sure that his vision was from God and that the Lord was with him that he was able to say, in effect, “God told me to do this.” We see that Nehemiah wasn’t guessing about what he should do. I hope you feel the same way about your own dream.
When you put your plan on paper, you will find that you have plenty of material for your prayers. You know, you can’t fulfill your dream by yourself. You must have God’s help. If your prayer time is short, maybe it’s because you have nothing specific to pray about.
However, if you develop a plan, you will never have enough time to pray. There will always be something calling on your faith to pray and to believe God for. In closing, remember that your plan will enable you to fulfill your destiny.
In Deuteronomy 30:19, it was God who told the people, “I have set before you, life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life.” So in other words, what He was saying is: “Please stop procrastinating and hoping you will eventually get somewhere in life. Decide whether you’re going to get a curse or a blessing. You must even decide whether you are going to live or die.”
Jesus says in Revelation 3:15-16, “I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold - I am about to spit you out of my mouth.”
Make a plan and fulfill it. Don’t procrastinate about your dream and drift along, ending up wherever the lukewarm tide takes you. My friends today, you were not designed to drift. You were designed for destiny. Make up your mind now. Have a wonderful week and enjoy the summer. Pray for one another and let God be the centerpiece of your plan.
Prayer: Father, it is You who gives us what we need to pray for. This morning, as we begin our week, we pray for those who are serving right now all around the world. They are defending this land that we so much love. Thank You for what they have passed on, giving their lives for the freedom that we have. We should never neglect or take it for granted. We see other countries being oppressed by their leaders. They have no peace nor the freedom to worship You. We also thank the forefathers of this nation who used the principles in Your Word, to be the centerpiece to establish this nation. We will never forget how we began and where we are today. I am so thankful that I can raise my kids and my families in one of the greatest places on this planet called earth. We will never forget that You have blessed this United States of America because of the principles set forth in our Constitution which is Your Holy Bible. In the midst of the values and the morals, even the cultures that we abide dearly in our hearts, thank You that Your Word is the foundation of all our freedom in life. Thank You! Thank You! Thank You! May we never be a socialist country that exists depending on the government for everything. Let us make use of our gifts, talents, and abilities for the betterment of others. Let us never forget that we do not need to live life with fear and anxiety that has enveloped many, to include those who are serving You. You, oh God, are well acquainted with the insanity of this world. But most of all, You are the only One Who has the answer. You offered Yourself as the solution to all our problems. You are still waiting with open arms for us to come to our senses and admit our sins and our need of Your forgiveness. This is why we must be desperate to seek You first in everything. These are Your principles that go along with a very prosperous life. May we never forget the joy of our salvation. A look at the distracted and deadly things around us shows us all the world can only give. Just a glimpse of what they call beauty, is just a fall away. Thank You for always considering us in Your plan. Let us run after our vision and enjoy the most of what the Kingdom has already prepared for us. Bless Your people who read this daily bread. Give them peace and love. Let them enjoy Your Goodness and Your Mercy all the days of their lives. Bless them! May Your love encompass all around them. We pray this, in Jesus’ wonderful Name, Amen!
Thought: Choose life or death!
Living Large to Dream