This morning we continue our series entitled, “Refined Focus”. We have been learning about our need for focus all year and about this parable for months. Let’s get back to the parable of the sower this morning with a message entitled, “Trumping God”.
“The farmer is like someone who plants God’s teaching in people. Sometimes the teaching falls on the path. That is like some people who hear the teaching of God. As soon as they hear it, Satan comes and takes away the teaching that was planted in them.
Other people are like the seed planted on rocky ground. They hear the teaching, and they quickly and gladly accept it. But they don’t allow it to go deep into their lives. They keep it only a short time. As soon as trouble or persecution comes because of the teaching they accepted, they give up.
Others are like the seed planted among the thorny weeds. They hear the teaching, but their lives become full of other things: the worries of this life, the love of money, and everything else they want. This keeps the teaching from growing, and it does not produce a crop in their lives.
And others are like the seed planted on the good ground. They hear the teaching and accept it. Then they grow and produce a good crop—sometimes 30 times more, sometimes 60 times more, and sometimes 100 times more.” (Mark 4:13-20 ERV)
The major issue with the people Jesus likens to the thorny ground is that they have allowed their lives to become “full of other things”. They receive the Word of God, however, their lives are so consumed with other priorities, that they basically allow their competing priorities to trump God. This is a major mistake.
So what does this mean to you today? A few things.
- The commandments found in God’s Word and the instructions received directly from the Holy Spirit are NOT suggestions. God expects us to DO what He says. This is what made Jesus so successful in the earth. Jesus only did what He was led of the Father to do and He only said what He heard the Father say. Jesus was God in the flesh, but His power was derived from His submission. If you want to walk in the same power Jesus walked in, then like Jesus you must be submitted to the Father.
- A few days ago I taught you to give yourself the license to rid your heart and mind of all distractors, so you can rest in God’s presence and hear His voice. God made you a free moral agent and your ability to make decisions puts you in a position to dictate the direction of your life. What you don’t want to do is to use that power (the freedom to choose) to lead yourself above or away from God. Said another way, never give yourself the license to debate God or to put your ideas above His.
- God has given you the right to choose. You get to decide whether or not you will submit to or simply disregard God and His instructions. This freedom can either help you or hurt you. If you submit to God and His ways, you will be choosing to walk in the Blessing and you will enjoy God’s best. However, if you choose to put your ideas above God’s, your desires above His will, and your pursuits above His purpose, then you will in effect be trumping God and you will have to live with the results.
Closing Confession: Father, this is a season of refined focus for me. I bring my life into focus in 2016. I take self-inventory. I search me. And I ask you Father, to search me as well. As You identify to me, areas in which I have allowed myself to TRUMP You, to place self and selfishness over You and Your ways, I declare that I change. I repent. I die to self. I yield. I submit. I lay my life down as a sacrifice. Jesus died for me. His death was my death. So the life I now live I live for You! You TRUMP me Father, every day, in every way. I will never again allow myself to debate You, to dismiss or disrespect Your Word, or to ignore Your ways. I live a submitted life. I place divinity over humanity and You then freely live THROUGH me because of it. I declare this by faith! In Jesus’ name. Amen.
This is Today’s Word! Apply it and Prosper.