Are You Hoping For A Breakthrough? part 2

In light of everything mentioned in the previous post, Are You Hoping For A Breakthrough? part 1, let’s briefly review King David’s journey to becoming king of Israel…

 He was anointed by Samuel at a young age, but he wasn’t crowned until the age of 30. Do you realize all that he endured throughout those years?

Hunted and harassed

 He was harassed by his brothers and attacked by someone that was like a father to him. He was hunted and relentlessly pursued by the king of Israel (the same father figure, King Saul). Eventually, he had had enough to the extreme measure that he joined ranks with Israel’s enemy almost fighting against his own people.

 Throughout this distressing period of his life, David was given charge of hundreds of men. It started out as a small group of family and followers and later grew to be 600 prior to his reign. He did not recruit or pursue these followers, they joined him voluntarily.

 It wasn’t until King Saul was killed and David went through a terrifying test which proved to be his “final exam”. That was arguably the most stressful test of that period of his life, when his town of Ziklag, was razed by the enemy who kidnapped the wives and children of him and his men.

 1 Samuel 30: 1 Three days later, when David and his men arrived home at their town of Ziklag, they found that the Amalekites had made a raid into the Negev and Ziklag; they had crushed Ziklag and burned it to the ground. 2 They had carried off the women and children and everyone else but without killing anyone.

 This monumental test causes his most beloved followers to turn on him. Picking it up in verse 6…

 6 David was now in great danger because all his men were very bitter about losing their sons and daughters, and they began to talk of stoning him.

With God’s help and guidance…

But David found strength in the Lord his God.

 7 Then he said to Abiathar the priest, “Bring me the ephod!” So Abiathar brought it. 8Then David asked the Lord, “Should I chase after this band of raiders? Will I catch them?”

   And the Lord told him, “Yes, go after them. You will surely recover everything that was taken from you!”

 They were able to retrieve their wives and children…

  18 David got back everything the Amalekites had taken, and he rescued his two wives. 19 Nothing was missing: small or great, son or daughter, nor anything else that had been taken. David brought everything back. 20 He also recovered all the flocks and herds, and his men drove them ahead of the other livestock. “This plunder belongs to David!” they said.

And all was restored!

(Isn’t cool how God allowed him to be tested in this way, yet all was restored and no one was killed? Can you say “Hand of protection”? Note that this “hand of protection”, was there not only for David, but also his followers, for David’s sake. )

 Shortly after this we read that David was made king. It wasn’t David’s decision, but the people of Judah chose him.

 2 Samuel 2: 2…So David and his wives 3 and his men and their families all moved to Judah, and they settled in the villages near Hebron. 4 Then the men of Judah came to David and crowned him king over the people of Judah.

 God prepared him from a small boy and now he was ready. Not only that, through this process he established solid relationships within his team that yielded an undying loyalty towards him. These same people matured as he matured and they worked together with David in his new role as king.

Don’t give up hope!

 This may be a good time to reflect on your own life and consider the trials and challenges you’ve endured. Think about how God has been molding you with skills, talents, and abilities. If you are sincerely seeking after God’s heart you can be rest assured that He is preparing you for something greater, and should you persevere, God will use you in a great and mighty way!

 So remember to remain faithful to the responsibility that God’s already given you and thank Him for the opportunity of serving Him in that role today.

Galatians 6: So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.

 “Dear Lord, you are good. Thank you for the wisdom you give us in serving others around us. Help us to stay focused on your Word and the daily tasks you’ve put before us. Give us the patience we need to endure so that we can excel in peace. You are so good, thank you for giving me this opportunity to serve you. In Jesus’ name, amen”

Photo by Sergey Turkin on Unsplash

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Are You Hoping For A Breakthrough? part 1

What does it mean to give up your life?

Matthew 16: 24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. 25 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it.

 Every time I read this I am challenged by it. Are you? What do you think about when you read this? Does it encourage you or discourage you? Or perhaps does it leave you puzzled? After all, how does one give up his life? The NASB reads “but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.” How do you lose your life?

 This verse has not only challenged me but for many years I was puzzled by it. The idea of losing my life flat out scared me first of all, but then again I didn’t completely understand it either. What does it mean? Does it mean to quit your job and join some monastery where you’re cloistered for the rest of your life?

In any event, the idea never appealed to me so I simply skimmed the text without really considering it much. In other words, I kept reading to find more comforting words and pretty much ignored verses 24 and 25. T­hat is how I used to live and still called myself a Christian. Read it again: “If any of you wants to be my follower, …”

Am I a follower or not?

If I decide to be a follower of His, what must I do in order to lose my life?

 I think perhaps John the Baptist shared some insight to this when he said:

 John 3: 30 He must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less.

 I shouldn’t have to state that this should be the main focus of the mature believer. We should always strive to think less and less of ourselves and more and more of Him. I think this could at least be the beginning of what “dying to self” is all about. This is when you forsake all that is precious to you, your ways, habits, desires, attitudes, dreams, and your ideas. These start to take a backseat, little by little, as we draw closer and closer to Him. It’s less about me and more about Him.

As we continue to read through His Word we get more and more excited about His ways, His ideas, His attitudes, His habits, His dreams, and desires. If we allow God to work in us in this way over a period of time, persistently seeking Him, it’s only a matter of time before what was important to us loses its value and we place a greater value on these things that are important to God.

 This is the process of becoming one with Him and this is what Jesus modeled.

In this way, God transforms us more and more into His likeness and we become a sort of “Christ in the flesh” for those in our lives.

 John 14: 8 Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father, and we will be satisfied.”

 9 Jesus replied, “Have I been with you all this time, Philip, and yet you still don’t know who I am? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father! So why are you asking me to show him to you? 10 Don’t you believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words I speak are not my own, but my Father who lives in me does his work through me. 11 Just believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me. Or at least believe because of the work you have seen me do.

 And also in Colossians…

Colossians 1: 15a Christ is the visible image of the invisible God.

 We all know people and have loved ones who need God. They, like us, need His unconditional love, His gentleness, His kindness, His mercy, and His patience. What greater purpose or calling could we have than to become more like God so that those in our lives, who are wallowing in darkness, could get to know the living Christ through us? Isn’t this a beautiful and glorious plan? And isn’t this a great ministry in and of itself, to lead those closest to you to Christ?

Do you want more?

 But some of us, including myself (at least on some days), want more. Maybe it’s more responsibility or a greater following to reach more people. As if to say “If only I had greater audiences and be like those great preachers” or “If only I could start a soup kitchen or orphan house.” Maybe you’re hoping to start a full-time ministry. You may have envisioned your “dream ministry”, you know, the answer to the question: “If God gave you unlimited resources and your choice of how to serve Him, what would that look like?”

However you answer that question, that is what I’m referring to. I shouldn’t have to say that comparing yourself to others in ministry is never a good thing to do, but its human nature and whatever ministry works well for someone else, may not be suited for you. Only God knows how you can best be utilized and where you’ll thrive. Some dreams die hard and that takes us back to dying to self.

Are you faithful in the little things?

 While many ministry dreams may be noble or God-given desires, we must know and understand God’s ways, principles, and processes of growth and responsibility.

 Luke 16:  10 “If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities. 11 And if you are untrustworthy about worldly wealth, who will trust you with the true riches of heaven? 12 And if you are not faithful with other people’s things, why should you be trusted with things of your own?


Luke 12: 47 “And a servant who knows what the master wants, but isn’t prepared and doesn’t carry out those instructions, will be severely punished. 48 But someone who does not know, and then does something wrong, will be punished only lightly. When someone has been given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required.

 Throughout all of Scripture God has shown time and time again that if we are faithful and obedient with the “little things”, He will reward us with greater things. He works the same today. Therefore we cannot afford to be distracted by what the future may hold in some ideal, fantasy world. We must live in the here and now, where every one of us is called to an immediate, local ministry to serve those that God entrusted to our care.

Be faithful in your immediate ministry…

You may know them as your wife, husband, son, daughter, mother, father, friend, co-worker, the neighbor across the street, or the lady at the checkout counter that God put in your life to test your patience. Believe me when I say that only when you are faithful and are found trustworthy with your immediate ministry and after a season or more of demonstrating your perseverance and patience with where you’re at now, will God give you something greater, which comes with greater responsibility.

 So please be careful when you ask for a greater ministry, let me advise you to come first before God and say “Only when I’m ready, Lord, if it pleases you, I’d like to serve you in a greater way, but only in your time”. Just be careful what you wish for. There are many Christian leaders over the ages that took on more responsibility before they were ready and many of them faced unnecessary failure and serve as bad examples.

Photo by Sergey Turkin on Unsplash

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If you desire a closer walk with Jesus, just want more fellowship or "Bible Time" come join us at We have weekly calls where our sole focus is spending time in God's Word.
Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.