It’s Your Time

Acts 7:35   (KJV)   35 This Moses whom they refused, saying, Who made thee a ruler and a judge? the same did God send to be a ruler and a deliverer by the hand of the angel which appeared to him in the bush.

Acts 7.32 - It's Your TimeMoses who was refused by the people 40 years prior was the same Moses chosen and sent by God to do what he was first rejected to do—this time though, through a uniquely powerful supernatural experience and divine mandate.

Just because we were rejected before doesn’t mean we will be rejected forever. Rejection from people doesn’t mean rejection from God. Just because we don’t accomplish something now doesn’t mean we aren’t going to accomplish it at all. Most of the time, timing makes the difference. God often gives us time to grow and prepare our spirit, souls, and body.

Dear Lord, help us never to doubt You, us as Your handiwork, and Your plans for us. You will accomplish Your purposes and those of us who are willing to join You will enjoy the wonderful journey of being a part of divine accomplishments, wonders, and victories. Thank You Lord for such awesome privilege and opportunity—in Jesus’ Name, amen.

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Strongly Deluded

2 Thessalonians 2:11   (KJV)   11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:

For God to send strong delusion for people to believe lies sounds very “unGodlike.” But the statement isn’t a point blank no-context declaration.  The people God causes to be greatly deceived are those who refuse to love the truth.  They refuse the truth that saves.  2 Thessalonians 2.11 - Strongly DeludedWe may ask, why doesn’t God send them stronger convincing proofs and truths?  He already has, and He knows no greater revelation will convince them otherwise.

As sad as it may be, there are people we lovingly and sincerely pray for, but they’re just implacably set in their ways.  No amount of dialogue, conversations, love, reason, or evidence will make them change their minds.  They pursue their godless ways, influence others to doing the same, and even invent new ways to do evil.  In God’s patience, wisdom, justice, and gentleness, He lets them be, and turns them over to reprobate minds.

We won’t give up praying for everyone, no matter how hopeless, hardheaded, and hardhearted they may seem.  We don’t know if they’re unyielding; only God does.  We’ve often been surprised by God’s Spirit.  We’ve witnessed the most hardened criminals and even the most “hell-bent” terrorists come to their senses, humble themselves before God, and bow their knees to Him in full trust and surrender.  Most of us probably didn’t believe the first time we heard the Gospel.  We can’t really count the number of times Jesus through His Spirit knocked on the doors of our hearts before we finally opened up and invited Him to reside in us.

Praise God, He didn’t give up on us. Praise God, people didn’t stop praying for us.  We may have been considered cold, hardheaded, hardhearted, and inconvincible as well, but the “Hound of Heaven,” with His stubborn love, didn’t let go of us.  But here we are now—fruits of God’s love, patience, grace, and mercy, enjoying the blessings of those who met Him heart to heart, Spirit to spirit,” and soon, face to face.

Leader: Rejection to Acceptance

Acts 7:35   (KJV)   35 This Moses whom they refused, saying, Who made thee a ruler and a judge? the same did God send to be a ruler and a deliverer by the hand of the angel which appeared to him in the bush.

Moses was rejected His own people, but He was accepted, chosen, called, and sent by God. Forty years after he fled the land of his rejection, he went back and led his people out of slavery, out of cruel bondage. At Moses’ very first attempt to mediate between two of his acts-7-35-leader-rejection-and-acceptancequarreling people, he and his efforts were not received well. After God’s commission, and after God’s miraculous backing up of His servant, Moses was finally accepted by his people as God’s man. The man who originally rejected Moses was probably one of those who eventually benefited from the deliverance.

People can change. Not all do, but some do. Those who dislike us now may like us later; our most hostile foe may become our most ardent friend. We may not fully understand how our Sovereign Lord can direct even kings’ hearts like a watercourse to bring them to His desired end without violating their free will, but He’s able. Often, He works on surroundings, environments, and situations to carry out His plans. Oh the depths of His wisdom!!!

But even if people don’t change their antagonistic attitude towards us, we’re fine; we have God who continuously extends His loving arms of invitation, and loves us just the way we are. His plans for us are always greater than our plans. His timing is always better than ours; His timing is perfect. He can turn things around. When our visions and dreams don’t find fulfillment right away, we don’t stop dreaming and hoping. God’s callings in our lives are without repentance. We just wait, with faith and patience. As things unravel, we see God orchestrating all factors necessary: situations, events, even nature and people, to bring about our destiny-fulfillment.

Those who Receive Him

John 1:12   (KJV)   12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

Our precious Lord Jesus, the Word Who existed before the beginning, Who was with God, Who was God, through Whom everything was created, willingly came to His own creation, and sadly, was cruelly rejected. Not everyone did; not everyone does; we receive Him for john-1-12-those-who-receive-himWho He really is: the Lord, and the Savior. We are spiritually birthed and have become His children. He lives in us through His Holy Spirit; we blessedly experience Him, His unfailing love, His faithfulness, His glory, His truth.

It’s worth noting—repeatedly, if that’s what it takes, that there are at least two kinds of “childhood” to God. One is by virtue of creation. Through this, all of us, saved and lost are His children. The other is by virtue of spiritual birth. This is the kind of “childhood” that applies to the salvation experience or the saved. Spiritual birth is indispensable and no one ought to leave this life without it.

When we receive our Lord and Savior Jesus, He gives much more to us than we to Him. He gives us life; He give us light. He is far greater than us, but He’s always available to us. He continues to reveal Himself and continues to pour out His love. He invites us to Him; He changes us from within; He calls us to partner with Him in His Kingdom ventures. He raises us to such high worth and value. But despite the status we find ourselves in, He’s so great that we get awed even with the very limited truth we know about Him. Can we really imagine how we will react when we meet our heavenly Dad face to face? How does one react to someone so full of power, and yet so full of love?

He holds nothing back in loving us; we too pour out our affection and ourselves in loving Him. Motivated by His love, we as His privileged children live in such a way that we aren’t doubted as His; we shine His light, we declare His truth, we display His presence; we show His power.

Too Good for the World

Hebrews 11:38   (KJV)   38 (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.

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Believers who are persecuted and whose very lives are threatened that they have to lose their homes, leave their communities, and forced to leave life’s comforts willingly undergo such experiences not because they are not worthy of this world—that they are below the world’s standards. The converse is true; it’s the world that’s not worthy of them. That’s why they would rather suffer than compromise with the world.

There is the world; there is us. Our precious Lord Jesus makes it clear: there is no “unequally-yoked” marriage between the two. The world utterly hates us because we love our Lord. The world hated our Master; much more so will it hate His followers. No sweat. We’re not missing out on anything. We’ve been blessed with everything we need for life and godliness; our super-gracious heavenly Father gives us everything for our enjoyment.

Others can’t comprehend this. We live in ironies—or do we? Whatever we give up for our Lord, He returns to us—thirty, sixty, hundredfold, and with them, suffering. We have nothing, but we have everything. We live by faith in God that can move mountains, shut the mouths of lions, quench the violence of fire, bring people back from the dead; it’s by that same faith in our God that we are tortured, cruelly mocked, scourged, imprisoned, stoned, sawed, struck with the sword, beheaded, displaced, became fugitives. Ah, these are ironic in the world’s perception, but not with eyes of faith. We count all our earthly experiences for our Lord Jesus as honor and privilege; we see them working altogether for His sovereign purpose and for our best; we also see beyond all this bodily experiences–we see the glory awaiting. That’s why we don’t turn back.

 

Rejected Prophets

Luke 4:24   (KJV)   24 And he said, Verily I say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country.

Not all believers hold the office of a prophet, but we share the task of the prophets in proclaiming God’s Word to the people. Because of that, many of us share the same experience of not being accepted by people who somewhat know us. We’re not adversely affected by this; this is naturally expected. Some people would be hurt or crushed if given even luke-4-24-rejected-prophetsa bit of the treatment we as God’s ambassadors receive. But not us; we grow stronger through every rejection and maltreatment dealt us.

Our precious Lord Jesus Himself is our example. He didn’t just teach this; He experienced it. He came to the world He created, and He was vehemently rejected. But it wasn’t His loss. God is never at a disadvantaged. However hostile people act towards Him, He always comes up on top, and those who treat Him as their enemy always end up at the bottom. How can a refusal of the greatest Being and the source of all blessings be beneficial?  How does that make sense? How can that be a victory for the arrogant?

We’re God’s messengers; nothing stops us. Just because there are those who don’t accept us doesn’t mean no one accepts us. A lot of times, God thrills us with very pleasant surprises that make our hearts jump in extreme delight. He raises up people who understand us, who value us, who reap the benefits of listening to the Word of God we declare, words they believe and receive. It’s not that we’re looking for approval; we don’t serve God just to please men. But it’s amazingly delightful finding ourselves in the company of believers and fellow “prophets.”