I love the feeling you get when you try and get something to go to the wrong end of a magnet and there is nothing you can do to keep it connected. That is a little bit like the favour of God. There are some things in our lives that repel the favour of God a little like that magnet. There are also some things attract the favour of God.
Why do so many Christians settle for less than what God has for them? When you really begin to understand the favour of God there is no way you would want just a portion of all that. The danger in writing this blog is that you interpret my thoughts as some formulae to earn the favour of God…some sort of to-do list and you try to line up the do’s and erase the don’t in order to bend God’s arm in some sort of weird mystical effort to get God to do what you want him to. That is not what this blog is about.
My prayer is what I write will lead you to examine your own heart and be aware of how these things can help or hinder you in your pursuit of God’s favour and in showing his favour to others. You will be tempted to skip the difficult one’s as irrelevant …but don’t…. The Holy Spirit wants to use this blog to bring correction and conviction and I hope that is what you feel as you read this. I pray He highlights something in your heart in order to draw an increase of favour and responsibility to your life.
The first area I want to draw your attention to is the area of HUMILITY and PRIDE.
Pride is the greatest repellent of the favour of God. None of us are exempt from it and it can creep into every area of our lives. It comes in many disguises and can be extremely subtle. When we think we have no pride we probably do. Our independence is rooted in pride. When we think we already know more than someone else we are dealing with pride. When we think we are better than others or more deserving or more righteous or more anything we are dealing with pride. Pride keeps us from praying…trusting and even believing. When we think that our works deserve the favour of God we are dealing with pride. When we think we can live without Jesus or that our works are worth something or that Jesus is just not enough, we are dealing with pride. Our issues of trust are rooted in pride. Our inability to deal with pain or rejection is rooted in pride. Our inability to forgive is rooted in pride. Our unwillingness to repent or simply admit we are wrong is rooted in pride. Self reliance and self sufficiency are forms of pride. Our need for control and our independence is rooted in pride.
A sure way of attracting the favour of God is to deal with our pride and embrace humility. Favour can be missing in an area of our lives simply because we have pride in our heart. The great thing is that it simply takes genuine humility to deal with it.
Peter 5:5 says “God opposes the proud, but favors (gives grace to) the humble.”
James 4 verse 6 says `
But he gives us even more grace to stand against such evil desires. As the Scriptures say, “God opposes the proud but favours the humble.”[c]
These verses tell me that my pride can retract the grace and favour of God and my humility can attract it. Your pride can keep the favour of God from flowing in your life. Humility is not something we say…it is an issue of your heart that only you and God know about. You can’t pretend to be humble and expect the favour of God. It has to be genuine. Pride and humility just don’t mix.
Don’t be a quitter!!!
Another way we can block the favour of God is by quitting or giving up! It doesn’t matter what aspect of your life…there will always come a point in any area of your life where you are tempted to quit and give up. The temptation to shrink back, give up, throw it in and quit will always cause us to miss out on the Favour of God.
Hebrews 10 verse 35-39 says `So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For, “In just a little while, who is coming will come and will not delay.”fAnd,”But my righteous[g] one will live by faith. And I take no pleasure in the one who shrinks back.”
Hills girls do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed, but to those who have faith and are saved. The temptation to give up and quit comes at us on many levels, but even more so when we are weary or tired. When we have a picture of the favour of God and have clearly heard his promise then it is easier to persevere in trial but when we lose sight of his promises and our confidence is tested we can position ourselves to miss out on the favour of God simply by giving up too soon. One way to block or retract the favour of God is to become overwhelmed, frustrated and give up, quit, give in, shrink back. On the other hand one way to position yourselves to experience His favour is to keep going , One way to position ourselves is to walk by faith, keep believing, keep trusting, remain confident of a positive outcome, stay true, remain, abide and persevere. Some of you are feeling the pressure to give up believing, and quit holding on but we do not belong to those who shrink back but we Hills girls are those who have faith and are saved!
A friend of mine wrote this on her facebook status this week and I thought it was worth repeating:
How often do we stand on the edge of our promise and before us lies that which seems impossible to go through so we give up. Today choose to open your hand and allow God to make a way where the seemed to be no way. He is faithful and He is more than able. He’s the same God today who parted the waters.(Thanks Rebekah Acason)
What about the ‘O’ Word??
What about obedience?”
Our obedience is a true test of our understanding of favour. It tests our motives, our revelation of God and what we believe about Him, and our understanding of his grace. It reflects issues of trust, belief, fear and worship.
1 John 2:3-6
‘We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands…The person saying I know Him but does not do what He commands is a liar and the truth is not in him. The person who obeys God’s word…God’s love is made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him….Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.’
Partial and incomplete obedience is disobedience. When you hear God telling you to do something, when his word tells you to live a certain way, when we decide to walk in agreement with him…right there we find favour
Maybe you have experienced the effect of these or any one f a number of things the enemy puts in our path to blind us, block us, distract us or destroy us. I haven’t even mention some of the other things the Bible tells us attracts God’s favour such as generosity, thanksgiving, praise, honour, faithfulness, service….……