Today we continue our series, “Progress On Purpose.” I told you that God wants us to walk in “NEW LEVELS IN 2021!” But if we are going to do so, we must be intentional about our progress. With that in mind, as we lay the foundation for the year, I told you that I would discuss “Leveling Up” in five areas:
In the last area, I am addressing leveling up your external relationships. I will cover the following topics in this section:
1. The three people you need in your life (the roles you need filled)
2. Discerning when to let people go
3. The importance of choosing the right friends
4. Surrounding yourself with people of like-precious-faith
Setting the stage:
We have been looking at the story of the Virgin Mary for a few days now. Yesterday we saw what happened when Mary went to visit her cousin Elizabeth. Let’s go back to that account today.
(Luke 1:39-45 ERV)
39 Mary got up and went quickly to a town in the hill country of Judea.
40 She went into Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth.
41 When Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the unborn baby inside her jumped, and she was filled with the Holy Spirit.
42 In a loud voice she said to Mary, “God has blessed you more than any other woman. And God has blessed the baby you will have.
43 You are the mother of my Lord, and you have come to me! Why has something so good happened to me?
44 When I heard your voice, the baby inside me jumped with joy.
45 Great blessings are yours because you believed what the Lord said to you! You believed this would happen.”
So what does this mean for you today? A few things.
1. Being pregnant with God’s purpose is a critical and delicate season.
Both Mary and Elizabeth were pregnant. Both pregnancies came as a result of a promise of God and the manifestation of of a miracle on this planet. Both women had God’s promise growing inside of them, but they were at different stages.
I already told you that Mary was not showing. She did not have a baby bump. She did not have the results of a pregnancy test. She was not carrying her ultrasound report around with her. All she knew was that God said it, she believed it, and she was living her life as if she was pregnant. She had no way to validate it, but she believed it anyway.
Faith believes what God has promised, even without sense realm evidence (Heb 11:1). Faith believes the unseen over the seen (2 Cor 4:18). Faith even speaks what God revealed BEFORE it happens (2 Cor 4:13), which is the language of faith. Mary was doing all of these things. But she still needed to be around someone who could understand what she was believing God for and who could help further solidify her faith.
Elizabeth was at a different stage. Unlike Mary, she did not get pregnant by the Holy Spirit. She got pregnant by her husband. But God was still involved because she had been barren all her life and both of them were past the child bearing age. They needed a miracle, and they got it. She was pregnant. There she was, six months pregnant, waiting for the promised child, John, to be born. She was living with her husband, but he could not encourage her much. God shut his mouth. He was not able to speak, because he did not believe what God was saying through the angel Gabriel, and God did not want him to speak negatively about the promise.
Elizabeth was living with a growing promise, but she did not have anyone around her to help fuel her faith. This is where Mary comes in. As soon as Mary walked through the door of her home, the promise she was carrying around on the inside of her was set on fire!
The point I am making here is that there is a space between the promise and the performance. In that space, while you are waiting on the ultimate manifestation of what God said, you are pregnant with God’s purpose. You are carrying “your baby” around in your heart. You know the time will come for you to bring the baby forth. In this stage, it is critical that you surround yourself with the right people. Whether you are early in the journey, like Mary was, where you have not experienced anything yet that can validate what God said, or you are late in the journey, like Elizabeth was, where you know you are pregnant and you are waiting for the baby to come, this is a season where you have to surround yourself with people who will help you and not hurt you!
If you surround yourself with the wrong people, people with no faith, their lack of faith can lead to a faith failure in your heart. So if you are around those types of people, make sure you don’t share what you are pregnant with, because they won’t believe it! Only share precious things with precious people!
2. While you are pregnant with God’s purpose, make sure you surround yourself with people who will make your baby leap.
Elizabeth was living with a miracle growing inside of her. She literally had God’s promise in her belly. But she did not have anyone around her to help fuel her faith. Her husband had his mouth shut up by God. She was believing God without much external support until Mary came to visit. As soon as Mary walked through the door of her home, her baby leaped!
— While you are carrying God’s promise in your heart, you need to surround yourself with people who are going to make your baby leap!
— When you are around people who are anointed like you are anointed, then just being in their presence can cause a reaction in your heart. You will literally “feel” different. Your spirit will sense the power of the Holy Spirit in and on them.
— Elizabeth was carrying her baby around for six months before Mary showed up. For six months, she had no one to ignite her faith and reinforce what God was doing in her life. But when Mary showed up, it set off a reaction in her. In turn, Elizabeth provided Mary what she needed to hear. Mary’s faith was stirred, reinforced, and edified. Both women were receiving so much from the fellowship that Mary remained in Elizabeth’s house for three months. When you are around the right people, it’s like you never want the fellowship to end. When you are around the wrong people, you can’t wait ‘till they leave your house!
— When you around people of faith, people who are going through a similar faith journey, you are able to reinforce one another. You may even experience moments where what is on them causes a SPARK or FIRE inside of you, like what happened with Elizabeth. My point here, as I close the message for today, is that you should surround yourself with people who will reinforce your faith. Living the life of faith is not always easy. There will be times when you battle thoughts of fear, doubt, and unbelief. But when you get around the right people, your BABY WILL LEAP, and you will be reminded that it is only a matter of time before you see, in your hands, what you have already seen, in your heart!
That’s enough for today.
Declaration of Faith:
Father, You have spoken many precious promises to me. There are things that are growing in my heart. I am carrying multiple babies in my spiritual belly. I know I am pregnant with purpose and there will come a time when I have to give birth! While I am waiting on the manifestation of Your promises, I know this season is a critical time. So I surround myself with the right people, people of like precious faith. When I do, MY BABY WILL LEAP, my faith will be reinforced, and my doubts will be squelched. I LEVEL UP my relationships in 2021. GREATER IS COMING FOR ME! I declare this by faith! In Jesus’ name. Amen.
This is Today’s Word. Apply it and prosper!