LIFE GIVERS MINISTRIES
AND WE ASK___? Part 1
Jesus’ way of healing was for Him to just be there when it was needed. He didn’t lay hands on everyone. Actually, they wanted to lay hands on or touch Him! They knew if they could touch Him or the hem of His garment they would be healed. (Matthew 9:20; Matthew 13:34-36; Mark 3:10 and Luke 6:19) These verses really speak of their faith in the promises they had heard.
When He actually reached out to touch, it accomplished many things. In Matt. 8:3; it speaks of a cleansing touch. Matt.8:15 tells us of a quieting touch. Again in Matt.9:29, 30 it speaks of an illuminating touch. A reassuring touch in Matt. 17:7. A liberating touch in Mk. 7:33, 35; touched the children in Matt. 10:13, 16; and then the healing touch in Luke 22:51.
The Old Testament records the laying of personal bodies over the dead as well as the sick. The faith of the Old Testament Prophets was great and made them very bold. They KNEW God! They believed the promises of God and they got results when they prayed. Many miracles were accomplished because of their faith and boldness. When they spoke people listened! They didn’t always like what was spoken but they heard!
And now we ask, what is Faith?
Hebrews 11:1—“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Can anyone explain this verse to me? It took me a long time to grasp its meaning. Let us look at it in another version. The Message puts it this way. Heb. 11:1—“The fundamental fact of existence is that this trust in God, this faith, is the firm foundation under everything that makes life worth living. It’s our handle on what we can’t see. The act of faith is what distinguished our ancestors, set them above the crowd.” (I’m glad I didn’t have to memorize that one!) The Concordant Literal New Testament puts it this way—“Now faith is the assumption of what is being expected. A conviction concerning matters which are not being observed; for in this the Elders were testified to.”
This is how I understand faith. If I put a pot of water on the stove and turn the burner on, I expect it to boil. Not right away but as the fire burns. Eventually, it will boil. I have not seen it yet but my faith is in the heat to do what it promises. I have lined up with the qualifications expected of me. I have taken out a pan, put water in it, put it on the burner and turned the correct burner on. The rest is up to the stove. I can’t make the water boil; only the heat from the stove can accomplish this. My part now is to wait! Eventually the expected appears! Boiling water!!
We have to do the same thing with God’s promises. First of all, I have to find out His will in the situation, His promise, and ask in His will. I HAVE TO LINE UP WITH THE QUALIFICATIONS EXPECTED OF ME AND THE PROMISE IS ACCOMPLISHED. Maybe not as soon as we want it but like the water, as I wait it will come about.
That is the faith we live by. We have faith (trust) that God has promised, we qualify or put ourselves in a position to receive, remind Him of His promise, (or pray the Word) and wait with assurance that it will be accomplished! Sounds easy, right? It is the same way we believe we are saved by the sacrifice of Jesus. Unless you are still “working” to stay saved, you are resting in the fact that HE says you have been forgiven and are redeemed! He paid the price for every man and by His Grace are we saved! He reconciled All men back to God and if we can believe without seeing or by faith, the same faith we are talking about here, we are resting in the Promise of God! We didn’t even have to ask Him for that! He sent His Son, Holy Spirit, in the form of a man named Jesus. (Isaiah 7:14: Isaiah 9:6, 7; Matthew 1:18-23) Our place is to accept the promise, by faith, that what He said He would do is done! No works or confessions or what ever people say we must do needs to be done! We believe, receive the word and let Him have His way in our lives. That is where the fire starts! But the faith is where it all comes from. We rest in Him and know that all is done already! According to Hebrews 4: 3, we know the works were finished from the foundation of the world. I love the way the Old and the New Testament come together confirming one another. All through the Bible He swears that His Word will come to pass. (Heb 6:13)
My point being is that we know the Word of God is Truth and that we have to have faith or belief in it so it can work in our lives. The people who do this are blessed and happy. We can serve ourselves and work hard to be happy and satisfied or work hard to believe God’s promises and be blessed! It is our choice but we don’t have a choice about whether we are saved or not. God made that choice before the beginning of the world! Thank God that we have something better to look forward too. Don’t fight it, just rest in Him.
The day Frank and I got married; neither of us knew what love was. I challenge anyone reading this to truly say they weren’t in the same place on their day! I know we thought we did but we did not have a clue! No one ever told us that love was like a tree and had to grow with a lot of sweat, tears and COMMITMENT! We didn’t find that out until about the 7th or 8th year. You don’t fall in love you grow into love. The seed is there but it is not a tree! Now that we have been married 50+ years, believe me, we KNOW! What do we know? Somewhere along the line we realized we think alike, feel about things the same way, mostly like the same foods, enjoy the same things as far as hobbies go and we are committed to one another. Please don’t ask me how or when this happened because I couldn’t tell you. I am sure he can’t either. Relationship is what we are talking about here. Because we worked at the seed that was planted it happened. If we had left the seed to its own, the seed would have gradually died. As proof of this, try planting a flower seed and see what happens if you don’t water and feed it. God used the planting and harvest system all through the Bible. We see it everyday.
If we are to have this “marriage” relationship with Him, we have to tend the Seed that has been planted in our hearts. We have to spend time with Him in prayer and thought. Thinking about Him and keeping our minds staid on Him. All this stuff the world wants us to think about will never put us in the place of hearing from Him. He is always trying to get through to us but other things fill our minds. It is hard to think on Him when so much is going on around us.
It is not only the secular world or system that pulls us away, but the Christian system will do the same thing! That world will cause us to think that if we are not at the church every time the doors are open we are in fault. It seems that if the church is not a family friendly church it is not correct. Family friendly means it keeps us so busy at the church building that we don’t have time for the highways and by-ways! Since Jesus said for us to go into the highways and byways, I would think that is more important than being in church seven days a week. What about family? When do we have time to minister to them? And then of course there has to be time to spend with Him. It seems as though that is an after thought. IF there is time after spending four or five days or evenings in meetings then God’s time and the family time will be included. If we can’t find the time then it’s “Forgive me Lord, but I will see you tomorrow!” And the family—well, that is another story and you can see that by looking at our families today.
I am not saying that fellowship is not important but we have to learn that there are times that fifteen minutes a day with our Father is not enough. It usually takes that long to get our minds clear enough to know when we are in His presence!
Faith does not come by hearing the word from other people. Other people overcome by the words of their testimony and the blood of the Lamb in their lives! We overcome by the words of our own testimony and the Blood of the Lamb in our lives! Others can encourage us in the midst of a trial but only the testimony WE have for ourselves will do the overcoming. We need a testimony of our own of His promises in our lives. If we can’t praise Him for anything He has done for us we have no basis to believe Him.
If you haven’t had to trust Him for something small then you will find it hard to trust Him at all. You can’t KNOW Him well enough until you can have a testimony of something He has done for you and you praise Him for it. Then you have something to base your belief on. You cannot build on another mans belief. In my child days, I tried to build my life like everyone else. As I became a son I have learned that I am responsible to God for my life. Now as I am entering my father level I find I have a bigger responsibility to teach what I hear from my Father living inside of me. I needed a tutor as a child and as I come into realizing I was a son I needed a Father. As I become a father then my heavenly Father expects me to communicate with Him for myself. Childhood is easy. We think it is tough but at least we had a flesh and blood person to call on. Now comes faith!! Believing what I can’t see! As I walk into being a father it is kind of scary because now I have to hear from Him for myself! No one else to follow except Him! WOW! The Seed is growing as He tends His Garden and I am the harvest now!
Learning to trust Him to bring me to maturity without my help, except to stay before Him and learn of Him, is not easy; but such a fulfillment. I love the time I am in my closet but the biggest thing of all is to know He is with me 24/7. Makes no difference where I am or what I am doing, I can ask Him for direction; Trusting that He will never lead me wrong.
Now I think we can define faith a little better. Faith simply believes! The Seed is planted from the foundation of the earth. We are His Garden and He will tend it as soon as we allow Him to. Turning our will over to Him is likened unto jumping off a cliff and knowing He will catch us! We trust so many things and people in this world with our lives. Why not trust Him? He created us all to serve Him as He sees fit. This is a truism—it is easy but it is hard. There will be trials but count it all joy and let Him have His way. Everything is going to be alright in the end. There is no problem in God, only situations and none He doesn’t know about already. He has it worked out but we have to wait.
I challenge all of us to start believing in what we cannot see instead of what we can see! This alone will draw us to the point of spending time with Him!
Have a wonderful New Year learning to not see and still believe! God is faithful and is still in control of all things. Remember, our minds are the greatest enemy we have. Let Him have that part of us and the rest will be easy!!
As we individually strive toward the goal of the high calling in Christ, perhaps the best thing to do would be to stop striving. In reality, the only striving we are really subjected to is against our own mind, thoughts and actions (I, me, my). That is the same exact problem that Eve faced in the explanation that Father offers for the disobedience in the garden. As Barbara stated, when we can get to the point of not following along with our own desires, thoughts, etc., but allow ourselves to just listen to the inner voice of Spirit for guidance, then we will be heading in the right direction for whatever we are doing. We’ve been so ingrained by the church system that we need to have a pastor to hear from Father for us, but that is totally wrong. We need to hear for ourselves, because each of us is personally responsible for our activities. It is not easy but it is very do-able. If you really want to strive for anything, strive to quiet your mind and just listen to the still small voice within. Holy Spirit will never lead you astray but many times His voice is contrary to what your mind would want you to do. Learn to trust the inner voice completely.
Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, handling accurately the word of truth. (2Tim2.15)
Life Givers Ministries
PO Box 251
Lincolnton GA 30817
706 359 6977