We Can Withstand and Overcome Anything (Part 33) – Walking With God May Be Inconvenient, But the Results Are Amazing!

by Rick

Today we continue our series “God is faithful!”  The Lord led me to 2 Corinthians 4.  In this passage, we are looking at what it looks like to believe God is faithful.  Because of God’s faithfulness towards us, we can withstand and overcome anything!

(2 Corinthians 4:1, 7-13, 16-18 TPT)

1  Now, it’s because of God’s mercy that we have been entrusted with the privilege of this new covenant ministry. And we will not quit or faint with weariness.

7  We are like common clay jars that carry this glorious treasure within, so that this immeasurable power will be seen as God’s, not ours.

8  Though we experience every kind of pressure, we’re not crushed. At times we don’t know what to do, but quitting is not an option.

9  We are persecuted by others, but God has not forsaken us. We may be knocked down, but not out. 

10  We continually share in the death of Jesus in our own bodies so that the resurrection life of Jesus will be revealed through our humanity. 

11  We consider living to mean that we are constantly being handed over to death for Jesus’ sake so that the life of Jesus will be revealed through our humanity. 

12  So, then, death is at work in us but it releases life in you.

13  We have the same Spirit of faith that is described in the Scriptures when it says, “First I believed, then I spoke in faith.”  So we also first believe then speak in faith. 

16  So no wonder we don’t give up. For even though our outer person gradually wears out, our inner being is renewed every single day. 

17  We view our slight, short-lived troubles in the light of eternity. We see our difficulties as the substance that produces for us an eternal, weighty glory far beyond all comparison, 

18  because we don’t focus our attention on what is seen but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but the unseen realm is eternal.

Today’s message will flow in the same vein as yesterday’s.  Here are a few more scriptures to look at before we get into the meat of the message.

(2 Corinthians 12:10 TPT)
So I’m not defeated by my weakness, but delighted!  For when I feel my weakness and endure mistreatment—when I’m surrounded with troubles on every side and face persecution because of my love for Christ—I am made yet stronger. For my weakness becomes a portal to God’s power.

(Eph 2:10 ERV)

God has made us what we are.  In Christ Jesus, God made us new people so that we would spend our lives doing the good things he had already planned for us to do.

(Ecc 3:15 AMP)

That which is has already been, and that which will be has already been, for God seeks what has passed by [so that history repeats itself].

(Ecc 3:11 AMP)

He has made everything beautiful in its time. He also has planted eternity in men’s hearts and minds [a divinely implanted sense of a purpose working through the ages which nothing under the sun but God alone can satisfy], yet so that men cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.

So what does this mean for you today?  A few things.

1.  Your life is about DYING and RESTING when you know God made plans for you before the world began!

(Ecc 3:15 AMP)

That which is has already been, and that which will be has already been, for God seeks what has passed by [so that history repeats itself].

— Your life has already been mapped out.

— God already prepared for your success.

— If you are ever stressed out, it is because you are relying on human ability and you are either: 1) pursuing something that God did not plan for you to have (which leads to frustration), or 2) you are trying to work for something that is already done.

— If it is true that God already mapped out His plans for your life (and that is most certainly true), then it stands to reason that if you pursue something God did not already plan for you, then even if you pray for it in earnest, God will not give it to you because you are pursuing the wrong thing.  You are making a demand on God for something that is not yours to have.  At this point, you may think you are in-faith, but you are actually being selfish.  You are asking for something God did not lead you to ask for.  You are asking for a selfish desire.  James calls it “asking amiss” (James 4:3).  

— There is a difference between providing faith (and action) to receive what You believe God has already provided and you (as a mere human) trying to make something happen on your own.

— Faith beings where the will of God is known.  This means that until you know what God wants, you don’t know what to pray for or what to pursue.  This is where the inconvenience comes in.  You are not even authorized to release your faith for something until you know that it is in alignment with what God already planned for you.  If you believe this (and I certainly do), it forces you to spend time with the Holy Spirit.  You may think this is inconvenient because you actually have to ask God about things and get His permission before you move out, but take it from me, this small inconvenience will save you a lot of heartache along the way.  Once you know you are doing the will of God, then come hell or high water, you will not be moved!   

— Success in Christ does NOT come with MORE TRYING!  Success in Christ comes as a result of MORE DYING!

— You must DIE to the person you BECAME ON YOUR OWN so that you can LIVE THE LIFE God planned for you to live.

— ONCE YOU DIE, YOU CAN REST!  Because at that point, when God looks at you, He sees what He planned.  As the text says, history (or HIS STORY, the story God saw play out before His eyes) can then repeat itself in your life!

2.  To live by faith, you must spend time with God so He can reveal to you what is already done.

(Ecc 3:11 AMP)

He has made everything beautiful in its time. He also has planted eternity in men’s hearts and minds [a divinely implanted sense of a purpose working through the ages which nothing under the sun but God alone can satisfy], yet so that men cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.



— Faith does not believe IT IS GOING TO HAPPEN!  Faith KNOWS it’s ALREADY DONE!

— Faith is what happens when you get this divinely implanted sense of purpose in your heart.  You will NEVER be satisfied until you become what you saw!  But at the same time, you are RESTING in the fact that you SAW IT, and you know it is only a matter of time before it comes to pass!

— Our text says that God takes the plans He made for our lives, and He implants His eternal plans in our hearts and minds.  He does this by the Holy Spirit.  Once He does, if we truly believe and receive those plans, the plans become an internally planted sense of purpose, working through the ages, which nothing under the sun but God alone can satisfy.  We will never be satisfied until we become, on earth, what God revealed, in our hearts.  Now, this may mean that you have to give up some of the plans you had because God put new plans in your heart.  Or this may mean that God reveals to you that you were thinking or dreaming too small.  But whatever the case, this IS the life of faith, and it is how we are supposed to live.

3.  To live by faith, you must remain OPEN to God.

— One of the key things I try to do is remain OPEN to God.  There are going to be times when God reveals to me that I am on the right path.  There will be others when He reveals to me that I am off-course.  But I will never “hear” God’s leading if I am CLOSED to what He is saying.  

— Many people are so busy doing their own things, living life on their own terms, and walking out their own plans, that they don’t even realize that they are CLOSED to God.  

— While it is true that God made plans for us before the world began, and it is true that Isabella and I are seemingly walking those plans out (in our marriage, our ministry, during Missions trips, in business, and etc.), it is also true that it could have easily been a different story.  Isabella and I could have been CLOSED to God.  We have missed God more times than we want to acknowledge.  But thank God for grace and mercy.  When God reveals to me that I “missed it,” I am quick to repent, I OPEN my heart to what is next, I ask for forgiveness, I forgive myself, and I keep going.  

If we learn to walk with God, to hear His voice, and to remain OPEN to whatever He wants to do, then God can do what He planned to do in, with, and through our lives.  Simply put, God’s plans are better than our plans, and if we are OPEN to His plans, and we are willing to launch out, IN FAITH, to attempt what He is leading us to do, even when it makes no sense at all, we can live the life we were born to live. 

4.  Walking in God’s will requires sacrifice, but it is also a tremendous blessing.

Let’s close out the week on a high note.

While walking with God requires sacrifice, dying to self, giving up things you wanted, and etc.; it also means that when you do, you get to live the life GOD WANTED for you, and take it from me, God’s plans are better than yours.

— I am not going to tell you that walking with God is not challenging, but I will tell you that it is also amazingly rewarding.

— There is no better feeling than the feeling you experience when you know you were just used of God to BE a blessing to someone else.  You get to feel this way every single day when you walk with Him and you are led by His Spirit.

— Most people make plans, and I am not different.  It’s just that I take the additional step of putting my plans at God’s feet and asking Him if they are okay.  If they are, I move out.  If He does not give me the green light, I don’t move out.  If He tells me the plans are NOT in alignment with His plans, I dismiss what I came up with and let it go.  This may sound inconvenient.  This may seem like a step many people would rather leave out.  But believe me, YOU WANT TO HEAR FROM GOD!  You want God’s plans over yours.

— While it is true that I have given up things that I wanted for God because God told me it was not His will.  It is also true that everything I gave up became a seed, and God, who is the Lord of the Harvest, has seen to it that I reap a harvest on every seed sown.

— Don’t think that submitting to God’s will is always bad because it’s not.  I remember when the Lord led Isabella to tell me that it was time to move from our last house.  I did not want to move.  The house we had was amazing.  But God wanted something better for us.  It took me nine months to find the house because it took me that long to DREAM on God’s level.  I could not believe, at first, that He wanted me to have what He was leading me to.  But in the end, He gave us a house that far exceeded our dreams.  I truly enjoy living in this house.  But this was not my idea.  This was the Lord’s idea, and He planned it before the world began!  I pray you OPEN your heart to God’s best for your life!   

That’s enough for today.  I will close out this teaching tomorrow.

Declaration of Faith:  

Father, this is a season of LEVELING UP for me.  I LEVEL UP by walking and living by faith.  You made plans for me before the world began.  I was born ignorant of those plans.  So I pursued life on my own terms.  I was then Born-Again.  Now Your Holy Spirit reveals TO me what was prepared FOR me, but concealed FROM me!  This revelation becomes a divinely implanted sense of purpose, and I will never be satisfied until I fully become what You reveal.  For me to get there, I must REST in Your promises.  I declare that I do.  I know it’s already done.  I am fully persuaded.  Therefore, I rest!  Living this way, I Level Up my life in 2021and I boldly declare that GREATER IS COMING FOR ME!  I declare this by faith.  In Jesus’ name, Amen!

This is Today’s Word!  Apply it and Prosper.

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