The House that Faith Built – by Sis. Sharon

2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV)

16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.


My exhortation today is regarding building God’s house. We want enlargement, but are we building His temple? What or who is God’s Temple? How are we building His Church?

Expansion is not just a transformation of the mind, but a willingness and drive to build oneself on the foundation of God’s word through proactive Faith with works. Advancement and Enlargement came at a cost and that is through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection. If we are no longer existing and living in His word with a renewed heart of flesh and not of stone, then we must seek to build His temple (i.e. ourselves) for God to live and dwell with us.


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A house is built on a foundation of God’s Peace

1 Kings 5:1-5 (NKJV) – Solomon Prepares to Build the Temple

5 Now Hiram king of Tyre sent his servants to Solomon, because he heard that they had anointed him king in place of his father, for Hiram had always loved David. Then Solomon sent to Hiram, saying:

You know how my father David could not build a house for the name of the Lord his God because of the wars which were fought against him on every side, until the Lord put his foes[a] under the soles of his feet.

But now the Lord my God has given me rest on every side; there is neither adversary nor evil occurrence.

And behold, I propose to build a house for the name of the Lord my God, as the Lord spoke to my father David, saying, “Your son, whom I will set on your throne in your place, he shall build the house for My name.”


During David’s reign there was a lot of civil unrest and war on all sides. His own family and people would plot against his demise, but David still had the heart to build the Temple for God’s sake. However, God passed on the responsibility to his son, Solomon who would later reign as king during peaceful times. In reflection of this, are you experiencing attacks on all sides that you cannot focus on reading your Bible? Are you experiencing oppression in your life and circumstances that your soul knows no rest?

This is indicative that you are experiencing a level of Spiritual Warfare that is overwhelming you and your ability to see beyond those circumstances for you lack the knowledge, the wisdom and the faith to breakthrough that situation. Deliverance is key to gaining your breakthroughs in such situations and one of those weapons you already have at your disposable is prayer and fasting. Prayer and Fasting will help increase your faith and spirit power that is incomparable to human reasoning in order to confront your oppressive situation and circumstances with wisdom and understanding through God’s word.


God can send a foreigner/unbeliever destiny partner to help Build His house

2 Chronicles 36:22-23 (NKJV) – The Proclamation of Cyrus

22 Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that the word of the Lord by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, so that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and also put it in writing, saying,

23 Thus says Cyrus king of Persia:

All the kingdoms of the earth the Lord God of heaven has given me. And He has commanded me to build Him a house at Jerusalem which is in Judah. Who is among you of all His people? May the Lord his God be with him, and let him go up!


Foundations


King Cyrus was a foreigner who was chosen by God to help the children of Israel build God’s temple in Jerusalem. The Children of Israel were not in the best position to focus on building God’s temple as they lacked resources and were disorganized. In the previous verses before this one, we saw that the Children of Israel had fallen prey to the Chaldeans and some were enslaved in Babylon because they did not heed God’s commands. However, God did not give up on having His house built. God will choose the most unlikely person(s) to come help you build His house and your own. Our bodies are the temple of Jesus Christ, therefore, we must consider how we build ourselves for the Holy Spirit to dwell with us. We must not be superficial in our pursuit to attaining the networks, wisdom, knowledge, understanding, faith and resolve to build ourselves up to the Glory of God. In other words, do not be super spiritual in your way of thinking when God asks you to learn a skill from a non-believer. Non-believers also have knowledge (that have biblical principles written all over it) to gain wealth, health and wisdom to achieve your goals and dreams.


There are people who make things happen and there are people who watch things happen, but there are also a people who wander what is happening. Which one are you in these categories?

Are you a doer? Are you a passive observer? Are you a person who has no clue what is happening around you?


King Cyrus was a doer. He was stirred to act and he performed the duty of building the Temple in Jerusalem for the Children of Israel to be able to worship their God as required.


The house must stand on a solid foundation of Faith

Matthew 7:24-25 (NKJV) – Build on the Rock

24 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: 25 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock.


When you build your faith on a solid foundation in God’s word, you will not be swayed by human opinion, logic, reasoning or schools of thinking that do not align with His word. As you renovate the house called “You”, please consider the foundation your house is standing on. If the foundation is weak, your house will have no place to stand on and will flatten to the ground. If you are not born-again, it is time to demolish the house of lies and rebuild on the new foundation of Faith, which is in Christ Jesus – the Solid Rock on which we stand. Shaky belief systems lead to ruined homes when the Holy Spirit comes to appraise the value of your House. However, firm belief in the foundation of God’s word allows the Holy Spirit to asses and increase the value of your house, which is called “You”.


increaseHave you ever gone to an Open House to view a prospective home you want to live in? What are some of the things you look for in the House you want to live in? Likewise, the Holy Spirit is a prospective home owner that will judge the value of His prospective home and will do the necessary to make sure that His house is renovated to the Image and likeness of His taste. However, some of us look like derelict/desolate buildings in the projects with bullet holes from drive by shootings and graffiti splashed on them.  Are you up for renovations?


The House of God can only be built on a firm conviction of who Jesus is to Us

Matthew 16:17-19 (NKJV)

17 Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed[a] in heaven.”

In this scripture we see that Jesus chose His rock on which His house will stand. He promises the Church that He will give us keys to His house and we can get rid of the junk in our house and put new furniture to increase the value of our property. Are you ready to change your Home’s street name from Doubt Court to Faith Avenue? Then give the Holy Spirit the keys and title deeds to your house today!

 

 

 

 

 

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The Battle is for Your Mind – by Sis. Sharon

2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV)

16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

Without Revelation there is no Manifestation.

Today’s exhortation will deal with you and your mind. How we think about things will determine how we may or may not experience enlargement. What is holding us back? What can we do to break out of the old mindset and experience the transformed one?


We manifest what we believe about ourselves.

Proverbs 23:7 (NKJV)

For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.
“Eat and drink!” he says to you,
But his heart is not with you.


We had a women’s breakfast at that Le Chateau de Jardin in Woodbridge and Dr. Patricia Bailey talked about how she had a quote from Harriet Tubman who was an abolitionist. Basically, Tubman was a free slave who went on to free other slaves from slavery and she never failed to save each one. The favorite quote that Dr. Bailey still has on her wall from Tubman states this, “I would have freed a lot more if they knew they weren’t slaves”. There are a lot of people who think they are better of being imprisoned in a certain line of thinking, but there are people who would like to be set them free. The unbelievers are the one’s in prison and the Believers are the abolitionists who want to take them out of prison by evangelizing the Truth, which we know is wrapped up in the one who saved us and that is Jesus Christ.


God promises to give you a New Heart made of Flesh.

Ezekiel 36:26 (NKJV)

26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.


As previously mentioned before, you think with your heart. What happens when your heart turns to stone? When your heart is made of stone, it means your body has been petrified. You are dead in the eyes of God. You are cold and there cares of this world hold no meaning for you. However, with a heart of flesh, you are revived from death. You are given new Life and to live again means to have purpose in your existence. However, there are people who are suffering because they do not know of this truth. These people who are cold to the truth are living an existence that is equal to death in God’s eyes. You can say that they are not living, but just simply existing. People who are oppressed, depressed, stressed and hopeless.


The Actions of Death and Life Manifest from the Way we Think

Proverbs 13:11-13 (NKJV)

11 Wealth gained by dishonesty will be diminished,
But he who gathers by labor will increase.

12 Hope deferred makes the heart sick,
But when the desire comes, it is a tree of life.

13 He who despises the word will be destroyed,
But he who fears the commandment will be rewarded.

 


  • Gathering wealth by dishonest means will diminish, this is the way of death.

  • Laboring for increase is the way of life.
  • Deferred Hope leads to sickness and ultimately death (suicidal thoughts manifesting into action).
  • Having hope revitalizes you to live a long life and hope for tomorrows blessings.
  • Hating God’s Word will lead to ones ruin.
  • Having a reverential fear and respect for God’s command will allow you benefit and reap the rewards of His Truth.

 Transformation of the Mind will reap New Life where Abundance is sure

Romans 12:2 (NKJV)

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

Our mindset must align with God’s word so that our old life can be resurrected in the knowledge and faith of Jesus Christ and His finished work on the Cross. Our belief that we are the sons of the Resurrection means that our transformed mind must also transform our lives. If our lives are not transformed, what is this old thinking that is holding us back from our abundance and increase? You cannot put old wine in new wineskin. Death and Life cannot mix.


Old ways/patterns of thinking do not open new doors.

The battle for your Mind is not a physical fight, but a spiritual one. You have a real enemy who Hates you and does not want to see you prosper.


Ephesians 6:12 (NKJV)

12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age,[a] against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

If you have ever watched the movie, Fallen with Denzel Washington in it; you will remember that there was an evil spirit that would transfer itself to many people by touch and its wickedness would manifest in those people. Likewise, you as a believer are surrounded everyday by people who do not believe in what you believe. The enemy will use these people to destroy you. However, God wants to remind you that you were once like these people. He also wants you to remember that the Truth you have in you is the very same truth that will rebuke the Spirit of Unbelief out of these people. They will not know how to handle you as you stand firm in the Truth that you know, which is found in the person we call Jesus who is the King of us, his kings, and the Lord of us, His lords.

Understanding Your Adversary: Remain Focused and Don’t Get Distracted

If you want to be successful in life, you have to move by principle, and I mean by Godly principles that can be best understood through the life of Jesus. Jesus shows us so many examples of how we ought to live, so take a look at this on your own and do some soul searching as you pursue greatness in your life. Amen!


Luke 4:1-13 (NKJV) – Satan Tempts Jesus

4 Then Jesus, being filled with the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into[a] the wilderness, 2 being tempted for forty days by the devil. And in those days He ate nothing, and afterward, when they had ended, He was hungry.

And the devil said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread.”

But Jesus answered him, saying,[b] “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.’”[c]

Then the devil, taking Him up on a high mountain, showed Him[d] all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. And the devil said to Him, “All this authority I will give You, and their glory; for this has been delivered to me, and I give it to whomever I wish. Therefore, if You will worship before me, all will be Yours.”

And Jesus answered and said to him, Get behind Me, Satan![e] For[f] it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.’ ”[g]

temptation-christ.jpgThen he brought Him to Jerusalem, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple, and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down from here. 10 For it is written:

‘He shall give His angels charge over you,
To keep you,’

11 and,

‘In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone.’”[h]

12 And Jesus answered and said to him, “It has been said, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.’[i]

13 Now when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from Him until an opportune time.


John 16:33 NIV

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.


When you are pressing through for your blessings in life, when you are in pursuit of elevation or promotion, and going to the next level, you must understand that there is a battle you face against your destiny. This battle is against the adversary (the devil).

You have to understand who your adversary is and how he operates in order to overcome his schemes.

We are praying and fasting not as a religious exercise, but as a spiritual exercise to develop emotional strength, wisdom, discernment in order to grow in knowledge, power and Faith to achieve desired results.  It takes a lot of work to remain focused, and through prayer and fasting is where your spirit becomes sharpened to deal with things ahead of you that you would not have seen had you not prayed and fasted.

It’s time to understand what it is that you are dealing with when you are in pursuit of elevation in your life.


In Luke 4:2 – Jesus was tempted for 40 days and nights by the devil this means that your enemies do not rest until they take you down. Christians are sleeping while their enemies are plotting for their downfall day and night. You cannot afford to take on a passive approach in your daily affairs when the enemies of your destiny do not rest until they have achieved the destruction of your destiny.

Matthew 17:21

However, this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.”

My question to you is, are you still sleeping?


1372260154_Temptation_of_ChristIn Luke 4:3 – The devil undermines Jesus by mocking him and attempting to see if Jesus has an area of pride to prove himself and test his loyalties – Do not get suckered into this. You will have people who will mock what you are about and will attempt to get you to prove your self-worth by provoking you to prove who you are in an arrogant way. This provocation is really just a method to get you to act out of pride and arrogance which can turn people off who could potentially be your destiny helpers. Be still and know that this can cause you to sin and do something outside the will of God if you get suckered into proving your identity and self-worth just because someone mocked you. Try not to be moved by the provocation of your enemies who rile you up to puff yourself up with pride and arrogance to cause you to miss opportunities with people who want to help you move to the next level.


In Luke 4:4 – Jesus didn’t need to prove himself –  He already knew who he was and therefore responded with dignity and grace and told the devil plainly that “listen, you…I know what you’re trying to get me to prove but I’ll tell you something, you need to remember what Your Creator (God) has said and commanded you to do” (this is my paraphrasing what has happened) and therefore, Jesus turned the conversation around to pinpoint the enemy’s lack of obedience to do what the Lord has commanded all creation to do and that is to live by every Word of God. The Devil could not come with a good come back on that point because he knows very well how rebellious he is to God the Father. This is where Christians need to learn to order their conversations right. Just because someone is undermining you doesn’t mean that it gives you the license to respond with contempt. Learn to wisen up and respond with wisdom and grace. Order your conversations right and act with humility.


Jesus-TemptationIn Luke 4:5-7 – The devil takes Jesus to a high place and claims that he has authority over all the things that any man/woman would desire to have and that if he works and acknowledges the devil by giving him praise, he could have a share of what he has as well as a promise to this allegiance – Listen, do not be fooled by people who try to trick you out of your rightful place of promotion by getting you to side with them and work for them like a gopher to make them look good. I am not talking about rightful submission to authority here. I’m talking about those who scheme to get you to undermine the right authority by causing you to take a side that is rebellious in nature in order to achieve gains and/or promotion by dishonest means.

To take this into context, try and imagine this: Have you ever been in a workplace where a supervisor undermines the authority of the manager who you report to and gets co-workers to side with the supervisor in order to gang up together to attempt to overthrow and get the manager fired so that they can take the manager’s place by bribing people into being disobedient through lies and slander (accusations) in order to receive promotion at the promises that the supervisor makes as a form of a pact, or allegiance. “If you do this for me, I’ll help you get the promotion you deserve…”


The devil attempted to do the same thing with Jesus. But how did Jesus respond?  

In Luke 4:8 – Jesus told Satan to get behind him – Sometimes you need people to get behind you so that you don’t lose focus on what’s ahead of you.You can shove such people who are there to distract you “one side to the back” (a Nigerian saying) if they are in your face. Jesus refused to entertain the conniving nature of his enemy to be disobedient to the True authority Jesus submits to, which is God the Father. In the same way, you may face people in life who will try to get you to be rebellious and cause you to attack the leadership, to undermine and scheme against the heads of your company or church and overthrow managers to steal their places of authority by dishonest actions and slander. This also is a test of where your loyalties lie.


God does not approve of rebellion in any fashion, so why should you side with the devil and become associated with the oppressor? You will find that those that help such conniving people become a slave to the oppressor who never intended to fulfill their blanket lies and promises. Children of God, it is important to understand the meaning of submission to the right authority. Where do your loyalties lie? Do not entertain people that get you to rebel. You will find a tight noose around your neck if you fall for such schemes in your life. This is a trick the adversary uses every time to get you into bondage. Be wise to rebuke those who attempt to get you to undermine the leadership in your church, your workplace, your family or in any other area of your life. You will preserve your soul if you understand the meaning of submission.


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In Luke 4:9-11 – The devil attempts yet again for Jesus to prove himself, but in this time, he wants Jesus to take a huge risk to prove that his identity is indeed the “Son of God” based on his qualifications – Sometimes your enemies will be able to guess and see where you are heading in your destiny, and they will try to trick you into proving yourself quickly by taking a high and unnecessary risk just to prove that you are indeed what they suspect you are in your journey of life. They entice you to seek recognition concerning your identity and abilities by pursuing to get noticed in the wrong way.


Do not be fooled into seeking recognition for the wrong purpose. This will undermine your integrity.

Let us take an example to understand what is going on here:  Say for example, you know that you are good at public speaking and your boss acknowledges it and has given you the responsibility to be his speech writer. You are then invited to listen to your boss speak at a function but a co-worker thinks it is unfair that you aren’t being acknowledged for the numerous speeches that you have written for your boss to speak. This co-worker then tells you, to hijack the function and embarrass your boss by letting everyone know that you wrote that speech for him and that your boss doesn’t know how to do speeches without your help. By doing this, it is assumed that people will give you praise and acknowledge you for your skills and this will draw away the attention from your boss and put you in the spotlight. But the catch is, if you listen to your sly co-worker’s advice, you will find out by the very next day that you are fired and without a job because you undermined your integrity by undermining your boss in your pursuit of recognition for promotion.

Do not be provoked into seeking recognition and acknowledgement the wrong way.

The adversary is always provocative, and malicious in what they try to get you to do in order to miss the mark in your destiny.


How did Jesus respond to that provocation?

In Luke 4:12 – Jesus responded by rebuking the devil and telling him you can’t tempt me to go outside the will of God. In the same way, if anybody attempts to get you to seek recognition in the wrong way, you should tell them where to go and not bother you because you want to hold on to this beautiful thing called INTEGRITY! Do not allow people to cause you to miss opportunities for advancement by making you undermine authority, and doing things dishonestly in order to achieve promotion or elevation. Smarten up and do not give room for nonsense.


In Luke 4:13 – The devil departed from Jesus after tempting him for the last time and will wait for another opportune time to tempt him again to go outside the will of God – Your enemies will try and try again to get you to do something wrong that will make you miss the mark. Sin is defined as “missing the mark”. You don’t want to miss the mark in your destiny, so as we pray and fast, seek God to give you wisdom to know what to do, strength to withstand temptations to do something outside the will of God concerning your life, discernment to identify who your enemies of your destiny are, knowledge to handle every situation with God’s grace, and the will to remain focused on the goal without being distracted.


Stay.Focussed


You need God to help you with every attack that may come from the enemies of your destiny. It is not “if” the enemy comes that you need God’s help, it’s “when”. You will face obstacles; you will face trials but you must determine within yourself to hold onto your integrity. Jesus demonstrates that you can strengthen yourself through prayer and fasting to face such schemes that occur in your life. This battle is won when you operate in the realm of the Spirit of God. Your own might and power is not sufficient to handle each attack that comes your way. Seek God and He will show you the way to gain success the right way. Put your Faith and Trust in God.


Zechariah 4:6

So he answered and said to me: “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ Says the Lord of hosts.


Don’t make prayer and fasting a religious exercise, it is your spiritual warfare weapon for success.

Philippians 3:12-16 – Pressing Toward the Goal

12 Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. 13 Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, 14 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

15 Therefore let us, as many as are mature, have this mind; and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal even this to you. 16 Nevertheless, to the degree that we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us be of the same mind.

 

 

Enlargement Requires Endurance for Increase

James 1:2-8 – Trials and Temptations

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.

When you seek enlargement you will face trials and temptations.

  • Verse 3 – Testing your Faith produces perseverance;
  • Verse 4 Perseverance causes you to mature and become complete as a person, not lacking anything

make things happenWhat is Perseverance?

  1. steady persistence in a course of action, a purpose, a state, etc., especially in spite of difficulties, obstacles, or discouragement.
  2. Theology. continuance in a state of grace to the end, leading to eternal salvation.

 

  • Verse 5 If you lack something, this is where you ask God for wisdom and He will provide it to you. You have not if you ask not (James 4:1-3)

 

  • Verses 6-8 – When you ask you must believe and not doubt
    • If you doubt, you will not receive anything from the Lord
    • Such a person is classified as a double-minded man unstable in all that they do
      • They are neither here nor there;
      • You can consider such a person to be a lukewarm individual. They are neither hot or cold and worthy of being spat out (Revelations 3:16).

 

focus-on-your-goalIf we seek Increase and Enlargement we must be groomed for it.

Look at Joseph in the Bible. He was a slave, a servant, a prisoner and then eventually after all those trials and tests he endured, he eventually became a prime minister (2nd in command) in all of Egypt under Pharaoh. He was groomed through those tests and trials and endured humiliation, temptation, disappointment and discouragement that could have made him lose focus off of his dream, that he would one day rule over his family.

 


You will require – Integrity, Wisdom, Maturity in Faith and application of your faith through Action.

You must understand that Faith requires you to listen, and then do what you hear.

 Romans 10:17

So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.


df97a7852398fe9ae1ff346a811f53bcJames 1:19 – 25 – Listening and Doing

19 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. 21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.

22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.

  • Verse 19 – Be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to anger – A person who lacks self-control is unable to listen nor take advice, is argumentative, unwilling to obey instruction and therefore becomes unteachable. This verse highlights how pride can get in the way of doing what you have heard and been instructed to do, not on just a biblical basis, but also on practical basis with what you do in your everyday life.
  • Verse 20 – anger does not produce a right attitude that the Lord wants us to have
  • Verse 21 – get rid of the arrogance in order to obtain the promises of God that is contained in His Word which should be planted in you if you believe. What you ultimately believe in, is what you end up becoming.
  • Verse 22 – do not be just a listener of instructions, do what you have been told to do. You must apply what you learn and put your faith into action.

Example: It’s like learning how to swim, you can be told verbally what to do in the water, but simply hearing the instructions and then not applying those instructions into action are of no effect for you if you don’t get into the water to practice what you have been taught to do.


Those that practice doing what they hear (or have been instructed to do), will eventually become experts in what they repeatedly do and elevate to new levels from being just a beginner to a professional standard. This is how God wants us to apply our Faith in life. You may be a beginner at first, but you can only increase when you continue doing something repeatedly by practicing your faith and putting it into action.


 

  • Focus ConceptVerses 23 – 24 – If you do not put the instructions given to you into practice, you will forget and will therefore become useless and undependable to anyone’s standard. No one wants to waste time with someone who cannot follow basic instructions. Laziness is a vice to your quest for increase.
  • Verse 25 – Those that act on and obey instructions will be rewarded in all that they do. Any teacher enjoys a student dutifully practicing what they have learned in the classroom and attempting to apply what they have learned into action. Those that practice continuously on the basis of that instruction will be able to move to new levels and new heights.

Yes, you will face adversity from others who will be jealous of where you are going, but the first hurdle of adversity that you must conquer is yourself.

No one can make you act on faith. No one can force you to listen to basic instructions, no one can cause you to move and apply what you have learned into action. These things are non-transferable responsibilities. If you cannot change your pattern of behavior and thinking to match what it says in God’s Word, you will not go anywhere if you yield to the temptation of laziness.

The just shall live by faith, however, the slothful shall die by inaction.

Therefore, choose life, and life more abundant if you want to get to the next level.


 

John 10:10

The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.

 

Focus on what’s in front of you rather than dwelling on what is irrelevant and behind you.

45e84cbcf7c40a80e0dcb61a63403c08Philippians 3:11-13 (NKJV)

11 if, by any means, I may attain to the resurrection from the dead.

Pressing Toward the Goal

12 Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me. 13 Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead,

You cannot move forward if you have the old-mindset. Think big, focus ahead, move forward towards the goal. Do not allow yourself to get distracted from what is happening around you. Be like Joseph who focused on his dream. Be determined and remain focused. You can achieve great things when you have God by your side. Remember what the Bible says about you. When you are weak, focus on the Word that tells you “you are strong”.

Ephesians 6:10

[ The Whole Armor of God ] Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.

 

 

 

 

Does Your Faith Impress God? – by Sis. Sharon

2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV)

16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

The instructions that you are willing to obey, will determine the miracle that you shall receive.  

The exhortation today is to provoke you and your mind into serious introspection regarding your faith, your belief system and pattern of thinking.  How do you think, believe and exercise your faith in God? How are you applying your faith so that it produces desired results? What have you been doing that causes desirable results to manifest in your life? If you are not manifesting results, then how has unbelief shaped your pattern of thinking? These are questions that you must ask yourself daily so that you do not yoke your belief system to a pattern of thinking that goes against God’s word. Knowledge is Power and Knowledge of God’s word is the Key to unlocking Faith producing results for your life. 

Defining What Faith Is 

Hebrews 11:1-3 (NKJV)

By Faith We Understand

11 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. 2 For by it the elders obtained a good testimony.

3 By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.

 The Consequences of Not having Faith 

Hebrews 11:6New King James Version (NKJV)

6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

Belief precedes Spoken Words 

2 Corinthians 4:13-14 (NKJV)

13 And since we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written, “I believed and therefore I spoke,”[a] we also believe and therefore speak, 14 knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you.

Spoken Faith is obtained by Meditating on What you believe in, which is the Written word of God 

Joshua 1:8 (NKJV)

8 This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.


Proverbs 18:21 (NKJV)

21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
And those who love it will eat its fruit.


Deuteronomy 30:19 (NKJV)

19 I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live;

When you speak, you must be mindful of the words that come out of your mouth. The Lord keeps impressing me to speak life by choice. The words that you speak today have the element of death and life in them because your tongues is a creative force. Just as blessings and curses are spoken orally so can death and life. Choose your words wisely, with a reverential fear.


The Woman with the Issue of Blood exercised her Faith 

Matthew 9:20-22 (NKJV)

20 And suddenly, a woman who had a flow of blood for twelve years came from behind and touched the hem of His garment. 21 For she said to herself, If only I may touch His garment, I shall be made well.” 22 But Jesus turned around, and when He saw her He said, “Be of good cheer, daughter; your faith has made you well.” And the woman was made well from that hour.

The woman already believed before she spoke. When she performed her belief by turning it into action, the desired result of wholeness was returned to her in full measure. She was a woman on the brink of death, but she chose to speak life into her situation. When she chose Life she touched the fabric that was attached to the source of Life who was also the Giver of Life to obtain wholeness, who was Jesus Christ

Luke 8:43-46 (NKJV)

43 Now a woman, having a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her livelihood on physicians and could not be healed by any, 44 came from behind and touched the border of His garment. And immediately her flow of blood stopped.

45 And Jesus said, Who touched Me?” 

When all denied it, Peter and those with him[a] said, “Master, the multitudes throng and press You, and You say, ‘Who touched Me?’”[b]

46 But Jesus said,Somebody touched Me, for I perceived power going out from Me.” 

Jesus was among people who had little to know Faith in Him as the Giver of Life. However, the woman with the issue of Blood provoked a reaction in Him to warrant the question. Her faith was more noticeable in throng of people who were only filled with unbelief (and were only there to receive from the King of Kings ) because she had chosen to believe in the person name Jesus. Her faith pulled power from Jesus which such an intense force that only He could perceive the level of faith that could produce the desired result to the woman’s wellness. 


Peter responded to Faith as a Command 

Matthew 14:22-36 (NKJV)

Jesus Walks on the Sea

22 Immediately Jesus made His disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He sent the multitudes away. 23 And when He had sent the multitudes away, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. Now when evening came, He was alone there. 24 But the boat was now in the middle of the sea,[a] tossed by the waves, for the wind was contrary.

25 Now in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went to them, walking on the sea. 26 And when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a ghost!” And they cried out for fear.

27 But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid.”

28 And Peter answered Him and said, “Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water.” 

29 So He said, “Come.” And when Peter had come down out of the boat, he walked on the water to go to Jesus. 30 But when he saw that the wind was boisterous,[b] he was afraid; and beginning to sink he cried out, saying, “Lord, save me!”

31 And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and caught him, and said to him, O you of little faith, why did you doubt? 32 And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased.

33 Then those who were in the boat came and[c] worshiped Him, saying, Truly You are the Son of God.” 

Many Touch Him and Are Made Well 

34 When they had crossed over, they came to the land of[d] Gennesaret. 35 And when the men of that place recognized Him, they sent out into all that surrounding region, brought to Him all who were sick, 36 and begged Him that they might only touch the hem of His garment. And as many as touched it were made perfectly well. 

Faith is a command from God because it is the language that God addresses His word to His people. The command itself requires your willingness to OBEY it so that the result of it will be sure. What happens to you when you disobey God’s commands? The command is spoken with the expectation that the result will be effected. If you speak to God with expectation and declare and decree things to come into being for your life, then you have made a choice not to party with Doubt. Doubt does not produce results. 

Preparing Your Mind for Enlargement – by Sis. Sharon

2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV) 

16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

count-the-cost2


The instructions that you are willing to obey, will determine the miracle that you shall receive.  

The Road to Enlargement begins with your Mind 

Proverbs 23:7 (NKJV) 

7 For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.
“Eat and drink!” he says to you,
But his heart is not with you.

Example: Eye of the Storm Documentary (www.janeelliot.com

In response to the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. over thirty years ago, Jane Elliott devised the controversial and startling, “Blue Eyes/Brown Eyes” exercise. This, now famous, exercise labels participants as inferior or superior based solely upon the color of their eyes and exposes them to the experience of being a minority. The children experienced what it felt to be treated as an inferior or superior group based on the color of their eyes irregardless of their actual intelligence. Being told your inferior or superior to another group affected the behaviors of the children in negative and/or positive ways. Both the blue-eyed and brown-eyed children experienced both extremes.

The power to choose, lies within everyone. Choosing to act or not to act is a choice. Choosing to be indecisive, which is choosing not to choose is also a choice. Please be responsible with the choices you make because you will take ownership of them.

The Road to Enlargement is the Path God Paves for you as He walks with You 

Exodus 13:17-18 (NKJV) 

The Wilderness Way 

17 Then it came to pass, when Pharaoh had let the people go, that God did not lead them by way of the land of the Philistines, although that was near; for God said, “Lest perhaps the people change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt.” 18 So God led the people around by way of the wilderness of the Red Sea. And the children of Israel went up in orderly ranks out of the land of Egypt.

increaseGod could tell whether or not the Children of Israel were ready or not to enter the Promised Land. Through His assessment, He chose the best path to take them to that Land. God can assess whether you are able to advance to the next stage of enlargement or not based on your level of preparedness and will Guide you to your destination. It is important to be proactive in your preparation for advancement, rather than passive so that it will not take you long to reach your goals like the Children of Israel did (i.e. 40 years in the Wilderness). 

The Road to Enlargement begins with God giving you an Advantageous Position 

Joshua 8:18-19 (NKJV) 

18 Then the Lord said to Joshua, “Stretch out the spear that is in your hand toward Ai, for I will give it into your hand.” And Joshua stretched out the spear that was in his hand toward the city. 19 So those in ambush arose quickly out of their place; they ran as soon as he had stretched out his hand, and they entered the city and took it, and hurried to set the city on fire.

God will place you in an advantageous position in order to receive your breakthroughs. Joshua and the Children of Israel had already experience Victory by taking down the Walls of Jericho before advancing to the land of Ai. God directed their positioning and were able to reap the spoils that the land of Ai had to offer them for enlargement. 

The Road to Enlargement begins with Everyone witnessing you as a Sign 

Matthew 16:1-4 (NKJV) 

The Pharisees and Sadducees Seek a Sign 

16 Then the Pharisees and Sadducees came, and testing Him asked that He would show them a sign from heaven. 2 He answered and said to them, “When it is evening you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red’; 3 and in the morning, ‘It will be foul weather today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ Hypocrites![a] You know how to discern the face of the sky, but you cannot discern the signs of the times. 4 A wicked and adulterous generation seeks after a sign, and no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet[b] Jonah.” And He left them and departed.


Matthew 16:17-19 (NKJV) 

17 Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed[a] in heaven.”

God will re-brand you with His name and you will become unstoppable as God gives you divine access rule and reign your world both in the physical and the supernatural.

The Road to Enlargement begins with You Strengthening Your Position in God 

Isaiah 54:2 (NKJV) 

2 “Enlarge the place of your tent,
And let them stretch out the curtains of your dwellings;
Do not spare;
Lengthen your cords,
And strengthen your stakes.

It is one thing to get into position, but it is another thing to strengthen your position. Look at the US elections, people bowing out of the race, while others are staying the course. The winner for Presidency is dependent on the candidates attitude towards how they will strengthen their position for the seat of office. 


Prayer Points: 

  • Ask God to increase your faith to believe in your enlargement and to renew your thoughts to align with His words that speak to your position in Him 
  • Ask God to direct your path as He increases the territory you are to reign and have influence and affluence over
  • Ask God to position you for advancement in whatever it is He has intrusted in you to achieve
  • Ask God to show the world that you are the verifiable Sign that God is with you as you advance His cause wherever you engage in the practice of His word in your daily life
  • Ask God to give you strength to maintain your position for advancement using His keys to the Kingdom 

 

 

Enlargement Starts with You: Learning to Hear Clearly from God

In order to enlarge your territory, you must increase in knowledge of the Word, increase in wisdom and humility. If you can’t do these three simple things, you will not be able to grow. In order to grow, you need to first learn how to hear from God and not only just hear from him, but do as He says with the Word as your foundation. You cannot follow someone You do not know. Therefore, how can you follow God if you don’t know His voice?

There are some of you that may say, I don’t know how to hear from Him. I don’t know His voice.

Why is that?

The truth is, Knowing God’s voice isn’t really as mysterious as it seems to be. You can hear from God clearly when you have the Holy Spirit residing inside of you. Why do you think God seeks for all of us to prophesy? It’s because in order to prophesy, you need to distinguish and learn to Hear and obey His Voice. In order to hear, you are forced to humble yourself before God in order to hear Him by meditating on His Word (the Bible). Everyone has the ability to Hear from God, but how many are willing to Obey His voice when it comes down to it?


John 10:27 [Full Chapter]
My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.

Revelation 2:29

“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”’

How many of you know the song Thriller, Heal the World, Beat It? Who sang it? How did you know that? You have to have meditated and listened to that song multiple times to know the words, to know who sang it and so that when you hear others singing it, you can identify immediately that Michael Jackson sang that song. In the same way, that’s how it is with God. When you read His Word, you are able to rightly divide the Word of Truth. You can tell when someone is using the word out of context because you know exactly what it says. You can tell when a word speaks to you because the Holy Spirit bears witness to the truth of God’s word. If you want to be successful, you must work on your hearing and your obedience to do what you hear.


Romans 10:17

So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.


 Joshua 1:8
This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.


Psalm 119:15

I will meditate on Your precepts, And contemplate Your ways.


Psalm 119:23

Princes also sit and speak against me, But Your servant meditates on Your statutes.


14670-ThinkstockPhotos-465151829.1200w.tn.jpgYou can only repeat what you meditate on.

The definition of meditation is:

to engage in thought or contemplation; reflect.

 

When you meditate on the Name of the Lord you will be remembered.


Malachi 3:16

[ A Book of Remembrance ] Then those who feared the Lord spoke to one another, And the Lord listened and heard them; So a book of remembrance was written before Him For those who fear the Lord And who meditate on His name.

 


1 Timothy 4:12-16 (NKJV)

Take Heed to Your Ministry

12 Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit,[b] in faith, in purity. 13 Till I come, give attention to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine.

4 Do not neglect the gift that is in you, which was given to you by prophecy with the laying on of the hands of the eldership. 15 Meditate on these things; give yourself entirely to them, that your progress may be evident to all. 16 Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine. Continue in them, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.

 

 

 

 


The Church must be in Unity in order to overcome adversities that any brother or sister faces. You cannot groom leaders in a church if people do not know the Word of God. Every believer is called to minister in one form or another but the requirement is that you must know God’s Word.

UNITY in One Mind, One Spirit, One Cause


Philippians 1:27

[ Striving and Suffering for Christ ] Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel,


The power of the Praying church assembling as one, in one accord can break barriers, limitations, bring restoration, healing and deliverance and many blessings pour down from Heaven because of the unity found in the Church. A church that prays in unity prevents attacks from the enemy from succeeding and brings about uncommon victories.


Acts 12

Peter Freed from Prison

5 Peter was therefore kept in prison, but constant[a] prayer was offered to God for him by the church. 6 And when Herod was about to bring him out, that night Peter was sleeping, bound with two chains between two soldiers; and the guards before the door were keeping the prison. 7 Now behold, an angel of the Lord stood by him, and a light shone in the prison; and he struck Peter on the side and raised him up, saying, “Arise quickly!” And his chains fell off his hands. 8 Then the angel said to him, “Gird yourself and tie on your sandals”; and so he did. And he said to him, “Put on your garment and follow me.” 9 So he went out and followed him, and did not know that what was done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. 10 When they were past the first and the second guard posts, they came to the iron gate that leads to the city, which opened to them of its own accord; and they went out and went down one street, and immediately the angel departed from him.

11 And when Peter had come to himself, he said, “Now I know for certain that the Lord has sent His angel, and has delivered me from the hand of Herod and from all the expectation of the Jewish people.”

12 So, when he had considered this, he came to the house of Mary, the mother of John whose surname was Mark, where many were gathered together praying. 13 And as Peter knocked at the door of the gate, a girl named Rhoda came to answer. 14 When she recognized Peter’s voice, because of her gladness she did not open the gate, but ran in and announced that Peter stood before the gate. 15 But they said to her, “You are beside yourself!” Yet she kept insisting that it was so. So they said, “It is his angel.”

16 Now Peter continued knocking; and when they opened the door and saw him, they were astonished. 17 But motioning to them with his hand to keep silent, he declared to them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. And he said, “Go, tell these things to James and to the brethren.” And he departed and went to another place.

18 Then, as soon as it was day, there was no small stir among the soldiers about what had become of Peter. 19 But when Herod had searched for him and not found him, he examined the guards and commanded that they should be put to death.

And he went down from Judea to Caesarea, and stayed there.


 

If we want to increase, then we must first understand that enlargement starts with us. You need to equip yourself with the knowledge of the Word by meditating on it for yourself, rather than wait for a Sunday service to arrive to get fed. God is not in the business of pampering you with the word, He expects you to feed yourself with the Word and get stronger with other members growing in the Word. It is not enough to be hearer and not a doer of what you hear. You cannot follow what you do not know, so therefore, seek to grow by equipping yourself with the Word and learn to recognize and know God’s voice. You can only become his sheep when you recognize the Shepherd’s voice.

Are you ready for enlargement?