Have you ever had times where you just know that God is talking to you through a series of events or messages?
Sometimes I get that through Facebook. Sometimes different friends, all unconnected to each other, will post encouraging messages on the same topic in such a short period of time so that when I scroll down my feed, it is almost like one continuous stream.
Yes, I have awesome friends, but I also believe that God is always speaking to us . . . and some people are listening.
I see a lot of streams of encouragement, but Monday there was a definite stream, but it was more of a warning . . . a call to be ready . . . to be prepared. For what exactly, I don’t know.
But it started the day before in my Bible Study. We have been in the book of John and Sunday we were on John 19:1-42, which is an account of Jesus’s trial.
The religious leaders wanted to get rid of Jesus because he exposed their hypocrisy and threatened the status quo. So they falsely accused him and sent him before Pontius Pilate because they didn’t have the authority to have him killed.
Pilate didn’t really want to have anything to do with it. He wanted to set Jesus free and said every way he could that he didn’t take responsibility for Jesus’s death, that he washed his hand of it.
The religious leaders cornered Pilate by saying, “If you don’t kill him, you are no friend of Caesar’s.”
A lot of the commentary on this was that Jesus was killed for solely political reasons.
But I don’t agree with that. It was only a political reason because Pilate was being a putz and wasn’t willing to stand up to the bullies.
He allowed them to manipulate and control his decision. Just because they said that he had to crucify Jesus or be a traitor, it does not mean that that was actually the truth.
The truth was, there were continuous conflicts between the Roman government and the Jews.
Everything wasn’t peace and light, and then suddenly Jesus came along.
Pilate could have just told Caesar, “So here’s the deal. The Jewish religious council can’t stand this guy Jesus because he calls them out. But he hasn’t actually done anything wrong.” He could have stood for truth and justice and done the right thing.
But instead, Pilate operated out of fear and allowed the Jewish leaders to define the narrative instead of actually seeking truth.
And this was the quote that I think defined the whole class.
When we stop listening to God and operating out of fear, all kinds of horrible things can happen.
. . . then the conversation continued on Facebook the next day.
Being Led by the Spirit
I think sometimes we think that if we truly submit to God’s will, that we’re going to miss out. Or that we won’t be able to do something that we want to do.
Part of it stems from a lack of understanding of who God is and what he desires for us.
For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” ~ Jeremiah 29:11 NLT
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 NIV
That is the kind of leader God is, the kind that Jesus exemplified in his life here on earth, a servant leader. Even though he was the Almighty God who all earth submitted to, he came to serve and love others.
And he told his disciples:
Then Jesus spoke to the crowds and to His disciples, 2 saying: “The scribes and the Pharisees have seated themselves in the chair of Moses; 3 therefore all that they tell you, do and observe, but do not do according to their deeds; for they say things and do not do them. 4 They tie up heavy burdens and lay them on men’s shoulders, but they themselves are unwilling to move them with so much as a finger.
5 But they do all their deeds to be noticed by men; for they broaden their phylacteries and lengthen the tassels of their garments. 6 They love the place of honor at banquets and the chief seats in the synagogues, 7 and respectful greetings in the market places, and being called Rabbi by men.8 But do not be called Rabbi; for One is your Teacher, and you are all brothers.
9 Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. 10 Do not be called leaders; for One is your Leader, that is, Christ. 11 But the greatest among you shall be your servant. 12 Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled; and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted. ~ Matthew 23:1-12 NASB
God doesn’t go for the sit-back-and-dictate type of leadership, one of oppression and heaviness. He brings life, peace, and joy. He wants us to find rest in him.
God has a purpose and a plan for each of us, and if we are ready and willing to trust him for that . . . it will be awesome
Trust in Him
We aren’t always going to see the whole blueprint of the plan God has for us. Sometimes we might get a dream or a prophetic word that gives us a piece, but we still have to trust God for the rest and the timing.
Even in the middle of what looks like a muddled mess, we have to believe in who God is and that he is faithful to do what he said while we wait for the full picture to be revealed.
Then he said to me, “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel saying, ‘Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,’ says the Lord of hosts. ~ Zechariah 4:6 NASB
Even on our best day, it’s not about us. If we want to step into what God has for us, we have to walk in him (John 15:7) and his will, that is the only way it will work. We can’t do his will through our efforts. We will never be enough on our own, but through Christ, we are more than conquerors. (Romans 8:37)
When Jesus said, “It is finished” (John 19:30) . . . he meant that it was ALL DONE.
At just the right time, I heard you.
On the day of salvation, I helped you.
2 Corinthians 6:2 NLT, a fulfillment and confirmation of Isaiah 49:8
Since it’s already done, since Jesus is already the victor, we just have to stand firm in our faith,
Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. 14 Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, ~ Ephesians 6:13-14 NASB
In order to stand firm, our foundation has to be based in truth.
and while we’re doing it
Gently instruct those who oppose the truth. That God will change those people’s hearts, and they will learn the truth. Then they will come to their senses and escape from the devil’s trap. For they have been held captive by him to do whatever he wants. ~ 2 Timothy 2:25-26 NLT
And believe that
And remember that when the enemy tries to spread his lies and keep us from focusing on the truth that
And that we continue to
(Those were all posted within an hour of each other . . . what a great reminder to begin the week.
The Cliff Notes
What I felt the message of that day was even when we think we are going through injustice, remember that it is nothing new . . . Jesus went through far greater injustice for us. Regardless of the immediate circumstances, God has a plan for us. We can know and walk in his Will by recognizing what his nature is. We will have peace in his plan . . . not chaos. Have faith, stand firm, and know that He has already given us the victory