Several years ago my husband and I preached the Gospel in Africa. Every day many people gathered together and eagerly listened to the Good News. From the first day, I noticed a young African man who was disabled. He moved around on his knees on a special small cart that he had made for himself. I cannot even call it a cart; it was rather a small board on wheels. Crawling on that board, he developed big blisters on his hands and knees. Every day he would crawl to our meetings with the hope of getting a miracle, and God did heal him! The Lord responded to that man’s faith, once again showing everyone that He has an immense love for all of us, and that He desires to change the life of everyone who asks Him!
A large crowd of people that was present at the meeting saw how that young African man, whose legs had been paralyzed for many years, ran up on the stage with a cart in his hands screaming, “Look! I can walk! Look at me! Look!! My legs are moving! Just a few minutes ago I had big blisters on my hands and knees that would never heal. And now, look, those blisters have completely disappeared!”
Full of joy, he knelt back on his cart and showed everyone how difficult it had been for him to move around in that cart for so many years. Then he stood up, pushed that cart aside and walked down the stage!
This is what the Lord does! He wants to heal all people, and He can!
When I enrolled in Bible school I only had three dollars in my pocket and no job. The idea came to me to apply at the tennis club called Shadow Mountain. When I applied the manager said there were no openings.
The next day the same idea came to me so I went again. The manager told me again that there were no jobs. On the third day the idea came to me again to apply for a job there. When I approached the manager, he asked me why I kept coming back. Then suddenly another manager in the complex got into an argument with an employee and fired him. She looked up and there I was ready to fill his shoes.
Jesus instructed His disciples on where and how they could get the desired result. When they obeyed the words of their Master, they were abundantly blessed. In much the same way, when we heed His ideas, we will enjoy God’s best and will be delivered from unproductive and fruitless efforts.
It seemed strange to keep going back, but it pays to be persistent. The Bible says that in these last days God will speak to us through dreams and visions. It would pay to listen to all those little “hunches” you get and see what develops!
Christians should be the leaders in the field of science, where discoveries are made. They should be the leaders in the business community, where favor is needed. They should be the leaders in the stock market, where having a hunch is often the key to success. They should be the top surgeons in the medical field, where skill and insight are required.
Why? Because Christians have the Anointed One living on the inside of them, giving them knowledge of clever inventions and showing them things to come. “But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him”(1 John 2:27).
We are not left to our own intelligence or wisdom in this life. We have a living relationship with God, Who has chosen to live inside the believer!
Understand that God knows where the opportunities are and will readily open them to you! He is on your side. When you run up against a closed door and there are no open doors at all, He will make one for you.
In Astana, Kazakhstan, our team leader and the local organizers came bearing bad news on the day the tent was to go up on the palace grounds of the Muslim president’s own central park. This was going to be a first for Christianity, as no Christian evangelist had been allowed to preach in the capital before and here we were next to the palace grounds in the heart of the city.
The bad news was a flash flood had covered the grounds with six inches of water. The local administrators were planning on abandoning the site, but we rose up as we have done before and said, “NO! We’re keeping the site. Now let’s start draining it.”
In our efforts to try and drain the field, a man with a dump truck drove by and felt compelled to give us eleven truckloads of sand. He was an angel on assignment from heaven, even if he did not know it. It was enough to cover the ground for the big tent so that we could start on time. It was a miracle idea for a miracle moment. God is involved in the affairs of men!
I believe there are moments that transform a life. Your future doesn’t always hinge on the long hours you put into building your present. A new person, new opportunity, or new thought can set you on a dramatic new course.
One of those moments occurred in my life over 30 years ago when a small, $1.25 book called “The Believers Authority” was put into my hand. I had already made my decision to follow Jesus, but a few words from that book shot into my heart: it was not a special anointing, or special education, or special will of God that would change my future. But rather, it is the authority God has given to me already that must be exercised over the devil, the flesh, and circumstances that will be the major determining factor. He had already defeated my enemy, and it was up to me to do something about it!
This took me from stagnation to action. This empowered me for today instead of waiting for tomorrow. This energized my value of decision for destiny, over resignation to circumstance. Understanding what God has done for you and in you, and that His expectation is for you to use it, is a defining moment. He will not do what He gave you the right to do.
Discover this, and you are on your way to an exciting life!
Jesus had 3 ½ years to show us how to live and minister. Why did He only need a little over 1,277 days to establish the pattern for mankind? Some church leaders preach for 20 years to try and get their people ready for service, but Jesus wrapped it up in a few years.
He was confident in His finished work, called redemption.
He was confident of His Spirit in us continuing the training.
He was confident in the new nature we received from Him through the new birth.
He was confident of God’s favor on us and our new right-standing that connected us to Him and God forever.
What does the world want? The world wants deliverance from the emptiness of life. The world wants dignity based on self-worth and inherent value. The world wants a destiny—a greater purpose for living. The Creator is offering all three to every person.
God has called us to live, not just exist. We live when we discover our purpose, our potential, our power, and our position. We are seated in Christ at God’s right hand without shame, guilt, or inferiority, but with power and authority! We are co-heirs with Jesus to the throne of the Almighty!
In the face of storms, Jesus spoke peace and all became calm. In the face of taxes, He said to go fishing and gold was found. In the face of lack, He spoke blessing over bread and multiplication occurred. In the face of devils, He spoke a word and they were cast out. In the face of corrupt governments, He remained steady while they trembled in His presence.
We are called to walk in His likeness!
Jesus is calling us to follow Him into this same kind of life that He had on earth. He came as our miracle model. He gave us the power to live the miracle life when He gave us the Holy Spirit. Let us discover what we have so we can be who we really are!
When we know what we have from God, we know who we are. When we know who we are, we know what we can do!
Miracles demonstrate God’s desire to meet the needs of His people.
Matthew 15:22-28 gives us a picture of the Canaanite woman who came to Jesus seeking healing. She had no access to the blessings available at that time to the children of Israel—the people God had made His covenant with and who were the ones to receive His blessings. She was apart from God, His temple, His covenant, separated by the law and without hope! Yet she reached beyond the barriers and touched the very heart of God and found something even deeper than religion. She found grace and mercy for her time of need.
The Canaanite woman discovered that healing is the children’s bread, the very sustenance of life that God intended for you and me to experience.
When you look at our modern world you see that we are ravaged with a multitude of diseases, many of them incurable. These are diseases that the best medical practices and technologies in the world have no answer for.
In this story, Jesus reveals the picture of healing as common as bread on the table. Bread was a central part of every meal in middle-eastern society, and healing is meant to be just as common for our everyday life.
The Gospel of Matthew reveals healing as the very bread of life, the very bread on our table, the very sustenance that you and I should experience!
We all are familiar with sitting down in a restaurant and placing an order. We look at the menu and enjoy making our choices. I have seen some people get very anxious about it, and I have seen others wait and wait and wait because they can’t make a choice.
Years ago in Russia, where the food was rather bland, I recall looking forward to working on the border of China and going to a Chinese restaurant in the city of Khabarovsk. I was excited to eat spicy food, and with over 200 items on the menu, I was ready!
I asked for a certain type of rice but was told they didn’t have it, so I asked for another. They replied, “Don’t have it,” so I asked for another. They again replied, “Don’t have.” I gave up and asked what they did have.
“No rice, only potatoes.” Then I ordered Peking chicken. “Sorry, don’t have.” So I switched to Szechwan chicken. “Sorry, don’t have.” Hunan chicken? “Sorry, don’t have.” I finally gave up and asked, “What do you have??”
“Only Russian chicken legs.”
What would you do? I tell you this because some people believe it doesn’t matter what they really want in life. Many people think there is only one thing, opportunity, or flavor on the menu of life, just like I experienced. It might feel like you have no choice—but you always do!
“And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
You may not immediately get what you ask, but you can respond in a way that keeps your faith alive and an answer coming. Anger, disgust, frustration, or even hate is NOT the response that will bring a miracle. Forgiveness, mercy, joy, patience, and love toward others will turn the decisions of others into a triumph for Christ.
When Paul and Silas were thrown in prison, they could have responded with great anger because it was Jesus who told them to go to that city. They could have responded with tears, depression, resignation, etc., and everybody would have agreed to their sob story…but they chose to sing!
When the presence of Jesus is fresh in you, then you will have a good response to whatever is on the menu of life, or not on it. Your response is what makes you different, because you know you have a different source. The jail shook and doors flew open, and Paul was led out of the city as a dignitary, because he saw beyond the situation!