I hope that all of you had a fantastic weekend! Ours turned out to be quite enjoyable! Earlier in the week I had felt a “sudden urging” from deep inside about the need to be around some strong Word people... and to do it before the holidays! I sensed that it was not only for my benefit but also for my wife. So yesterday my wife, daughter and I attended New Life Church in the neighboring town of Cary here in North Carolina. The church is pastored by a couple of Rhema Bible College graduates, which is the school I attended a few years back. And I have to tell you, the moment we walked in, it felt like home! My daughter made the comment afterwards (to which I agreed), that it felt just like some of our favorite times at our former church in California back around the late 1990’s.
It was interesting to discover that they have just begun a new “Healing School” series on Wednesday nights. The Pastor’s wife explained to me that she and her husband had recently felt a “sudden urging” to start the series immediately. Humm… What do you think? Could their “sudden urging” and God’s “sudden urging” to me be related??? She also explained how they are teaching it in segments with the first four installments concluding before the holidays and then continuing on after the first of the year. I may not be a rocket scientist, but I don’t believe that it was just coincidence that we went on Sunday!
After church we headed home for a quick lunch and walk with the dog and then jumped in the ‘Stang and headed out once again to Apex. We had discovered a really cute subdivision last week and I wanted to check it out a little closer and look at another neighborhood a few miles away. I love it when God begins to increase our faith and therefore our confidence to extend our price point to meet His goal for us! It is like when I explained to one of our kids the other day how God did that when we began to think about another car about four years ago. Initially I began to look at the possibility of a 2007 six cylinder Mustang and eventually God raised our expectations and our finances to consider a 2009 GT Premium top of the line model.
I can see the same thing beginning to happen now as we have turned our expectations toward the purchase of a home. I am excited to see what God has in mind for us to believe for! I firmly believe that God wants us – His kids – to thrive in everything we do. How each of us does that is usually unique between individuals, but what or however it happens, we are still charged to live well and thrive.
I understood this point a bit more clearly over the weekend and into today as I studied from those familiar verses in Philippians 4:4-8. Verse four encourages us to “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say rejoice!” (English Majority Text Version) Upon further investigation, it seems that the command to “rejoice” not only includes the intent of “being full of cheer, to be calmly happy” but also to “be well and to thrive!” (Strong’s and Thayer’s) That revelation got me so excited on Saturday that I began to add this verse to the list of healing scriptures that I confess daily over my wife!
Do you do well and thrive in your life? I looked up the word “thrive” on Dictionary.com and it defined its meaning as “to grow or develop vigorously; to flourish.” The thought of growing and developing gave me the picture of one who continues to pursue positive change or growth and development in the various areas of their lives, be it physically, intellectually, experientially, spiritually or financially. It can be characterized by the idiom to not waste time by delaying to do something or “not let the grass grow under your feet!” (http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/let+the+grass+grow+under+feet)
I know of many folks who so hate change that they have been static and in the same place in their lives for countless years! I’ll tell you the truth… that pattern of life is very difficult for me to imagine. That is one of the many reasons we moved across the country. Among other things, it was time for a change! It was time to freshen things up a little! I guess it is the “Pioneer Spirit” that my wife and I have! We have always been open to follow the Lord in new adventures that may lead us along a different path than the one we had been on.
Now this type of behavior may not always be accepted by others around you! I have learned in my limited experience that the thing that most often stops people from making changes is a dependence on their personal financial picture. But to me, the bottom line is always where your ultimate trust lies. Is it in God’s Word in conjunction with the leading of the Holy Spirit, or is it on the visible balance in your bank account? Like I mentioned above, it has been our repeated experience that God has always increased our finances in line with the increase of our faith! And since he has no favorites, I firmly believe that He can do the same for you! (see Acts 10:34)
So I like the Apostle Paul, would also encourage you to go out and do well and thrive in your life this week! Stay sensitive to His Word and His leadings and see what new adventures or changes He desires for you to experience in your life. The Greek philosopher Heraclitus stated back around 500 BC that “The only thing that is constant is change!” So, go out and shake up your life a little bit! Reach out with the arm of faith and seek and follow God’s best for you. Have a great and exciting week. Stay in tune to His Word and keep asking yourself… “What new adventures that will cause me to THRIVE am I expecting today?”