All Things Are Possible With God: Resurrecting the Dream & Inheriting the Promise
I want to talk with you about that dream or promise from God that won’t let you go. The one that seems to elude you. The one that may have even broken your heart, yet despite your earnest attempts to walk away — it just won’t leave.
The dreams that are so deeply etched and anchored in our soul; unwavering and constant throughout the shifting seasons of our lives — usually have their origin in God. Those kinds of dreams, although elusive at times, can be a glimpse into His ultimate plan for our lives.
I want to talk about dreaming again and inheriting or obtaining the promises of God. Have you given up on a dream or promise? Has it felt as though a dream or promise has given up on you? Have you suffered a broken dream? Has it seemed the promise has tarried so long it’s now impossible? Have you failed miserably in trying to make it come to pass? Is your faith so shipwrecked that you are in a pit of despair?
If you answered yes to any of the above, then this post is for you.
I believe God wants to resurrect those dreams you have and breathe new life into the promises He’s given you. I believe He wants you to see them through His eyes with a fresh understanding that gives you wings of hope – Because He wants to bring them to pass.
God-dreams, as well as the promises He gives, are usually the ones we can never fulfill. They require divine intervention and providential timing – and that means a lot of patience, perseverance, and preparation on our end. And although we may try to get our hands dirty in attempting to make things happen, this often results in grief, pain, and disappointment. It may even result in despair. When we try to make things happen according to our own timing and understanding we are setting ourselves up for failure, frustrating our own faith, and the true plans God has for us are sadly hindered.
God is faithful, but we must learn how to cooperate with Him. Dreaming the dreams God has given you, and believing Him for those promises are not easy. They require a supernatural faith not unlike that of Abraham, Joseph and David. Each one of these men had to wait years, endure trials and testing, and learn how to obey God intimately under grueling conditions as He prepared them to embrace the promise He had for them.
One thing you must know is that God does not break hearts, and He cannot lie. If God has spoken something to you, He must make good on His word, regardless of your stumbling. I believe that we often set ourselves up for disappointment when we step outside the realm of faith into our own futile human attempts. I’ve done this myself, and I’ve known others who have as well. It’s human nature, and we all go through ‘elementary school’ full of bumps and bruises. It’s a rite of passage into maturity. However, the result is usually the same: disappointment and pain. When we fail to fully surrender it can even lead to a shipwrecking of faith and a derailing of our lives from God’s perfect path. I have personally experienced both – and I learned my lesson the hard way. I write to you as one who has experienced the personal misery of my own frail human strategies which only proved to bitterly reprove and chasten me.
The Lord is able to use your mistakes and failures to chasten, discipline, teach, and refine you.
He never lets them go to waste.
God requires childlike faith, and true faith is proven by our works. Absolutely true. But the faith God requires is also rooted in OBEDIENCE. Works that are not rooted in faith are disobedient (see Hebrews 3).
God has takes no delight in human efforts that are not motivated by obedience.
Disobedient works are rooted in unbelief that says, “I want to do it my way, by myself. I must have my part in it, because God just may not come through for me.” It’s the classic wilderness mentality for which the Israelites were constantly chastened. It’s the Saul-mentality which cost King Saul the kingdom. Not only did he lose the kingdom, but he lost the anointing, the fellowship of God’s Spirit, and in the end – his life. We can’t go off half-cocked swinging from our own limb, or bulldoze our own way like a bull unleashed from a stall. Whoaaa… If you feel the Lord pulling hard on the proverbial reins, it’s for a very good reason. Slow down. Take the time to seek Him. Because if you don’t you’ll find yourself in a ditch. As one who is passionate, driven and task-oriented, I have felt the divine choke-chain more than once. The Good Shepherd is not afraid to yank you back with his staff around your neck. As a result, I try to stay very close to Him, and I’ve asked the LORD to keep me on a short leash, because I know my nature. We must learn how to wait upon the Lord, listen carefully, and follow Him.
When we walk according to the Lord’s ways, we are at rest and peace, and we are no longer responsible for the end result or outcome. When we enter the Lord’s rest, we do nothing more or less than what He asks of us. We are able to enter into the completed work of Christ with the understanding that all things begin and end in Him. If He has given you a dream or promise, He’s the only One who can fulfill it. As the Author of that dream, He must also be the Finisher of it. The only way for that to happen is diligent and strict obedience.
Just do what He says.
Obey and rest. Do precisely what God tells you – nothing more and nothing less. Neither add to, nor take away from His word of instruction. Seek Him daily for your heavenly manna, take up your cross and follow Him, and one day at a time you will slowly be able to watch it all unfold as you walk it out in Him by the Spirit (see Hebrews 3 & 4).
When we obey God, He becomes responsible for the outcome. He takes full responsibility. When we try to make it happen our own way and in our own time, we become responsible for the mess we make, any delays, any hindrances, and the numerous trips around the proverbial mountain. And the only way out of that mess is a long hard road of repentance from dead works.
Dead works are those produced by the flesh instead of the Spirit of God.
They bear no fruit.
There is a better way.
Preparing for What God Has Prepared for You
Please listen carefully: You must be found a good, faithful, and trustworthy steward. God will start you out with just a little, and eventually give you more once He has tested you in that measure He requires you to mete (see Mark 4:14-25). He will graduate you to the next level once you are proven faithful and trustworthy.
The greatest things require the greatest preparation. The true riches of the kingdom of God are costly and they require careful investment. So, we must understand the Lord’s ways if we’re going to cooperate with Him. God understands that a proper foundation must be laid for whatever it is He wants to give or release into you. Because if you’re not ready to receive it – it will slip right through your fingers and be wasted. And what’s more is this: He will then be required to judge you for that stewardship in which there was a loss of His investment in you. We must remember that God is holy and just, and we will ultimately be held accountable for all we are given as stewards of His gifts. Therefore, as a loving Father, He takes the necessary time to prepare us and equip us for what He wants to give. In His wisdom and love, He waits patiently until we are ready to receive whatever it is He wants to bestow.
The Father loves to give good gifts to His children.
(see Matthew 7:11 and James 1:17)
But we must be found worthy of handling them properly.
A solid foundation requires deep digging. The foundation is never the part of the project that gets the glory, save for the initial ground-breaking. We always look forward to the completion of the project instead – the beautiful home, the high rise building, the castle by the sea, etc. Building the foundation is not fun, but God invests an extraordinary amount of time and labor in completing the foundation for anything He wants to build in our lives. He understands just how essential it is for our success.
God’s plan is nothing less than to see your optimal potential fully achieved in Him.
Building a foundation is messy, there’s lots of dirt and digging, and it’s boring. It’s never pretty, and it’s not something readily visible once the project is finished. It’s rarely even seen. Yet the foundation is the most essential part of anything God builds.
The foundation determines what manner of ground you are anchored in, how deep you go, and whether or not you will withstand the storms that inevitably come. The strength and depth of your foundation will determine how high and far you will go with God. Your foundation will ultimately determine your potential and success in the kingdom.
Trials and testing are part of that preparation as well. Anything worthy of use must be tested first. God is not afraid to let you go through some things. I’ve personally felt like He’s blown a hole in me at times. But it wasn’t wasted. The greater the dream, the greater the work He must do. If God has promised you something extraordinary that you cannot alone fulfill, the only way to cooperate with God is to fully surrender and let Him have His way in you and your life. You may feel like He’s trekking a lot of unmarked territory, but it’s only because the navigation requires that you know how to intimately follow Him through that rough virgin terrain.
Avoiding the Ishmael
When we try to accomplish God’s promises for ourselves we inevitably end up with an Ishmael. Sarah and Abraham were promised a son, but when things got tough and even seemed impossible, Sarah got a bright idea to allow her husband to lie with her handmaid. As a result, Ishmael was born, who became an enemy of Isaac – the promised child.
That enmity exists to this very day.
No one wants and Ishmael. He never goes away. Ishmael’s are dangerous. They hate the promise of God and will do everything in their power to destroy or usurp it.
The good news is this…
The birth of an Ishmael in your life does not negate the promise of God.
Despite Abraham and Sarah’s flub, Isaac still came to pass. The only difference is he had to live with a mortal enemy. You may think you have completely blown it. But I have news for you: YOU HAVEN’T. Whatever God has spoken to you was promised long before Ishmael ever arrived. God is still faithful to deliver on His word, regardless of our utter failures. You can’t fail God unless you completely abandon your faith. You merely need to believe again and let Him lift you out of that pit of despair.
If you have birthed an Ishmael in your life, God will grant you repentance. However, you will need to seek God in how to deal with it just as Abraham did. Because you know what? Isaac, the promise, is coming!
Inheriting the Promise
Inheriting the promises of God come by diligence, faith, and patience.
And we desire that every one of you do shew the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end: that ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises, (Hebrews 6:11-12, KJV).
Mary is my favorite example. Her correspondence with the angel Gabriel is as follows:
And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in they womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the LORD God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: and he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. And behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. For with God nothing shall be impossible. And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the LORD; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her, (Luke 1:30-38, KJV, emphasis mine).
Miracle of miracles! Mary had no understanding of how this could possibly happen, nor did she have the power to bring it to pass. She simply believed. Childlike faith was all that was required of her for God’s word to be fulfilled. The result:
And blessed is she that believed: for there shall be a performance of those things which were told her from the LORD, (Luke 1:45, KJV).
God is able to work with the faith you have. But He expects you to use it. A mustard seed is enough. For more on this topic please see the post, The Extraordinary, the Abundant, and the Miraculous: Letting God Be Who He Really Is.
If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth, (Mark 9:23, KJV).
God is far, far ahead of you. He’s greater than your mistakes. He’s greater than your sin. He’s greater than all your failed attempts. If you have a dream or a promise from God, He’s inviting you to believe Him again.
Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or thing, according to the power that worketh in us, unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen, (Ephesians 3:20-21, KJV).
Believe. Surrender. Obey. Rest. God is able to do what He said.
Cheers & Shalom,