– Last week we talked about Moving the Hand of God by moving on things He’s already put in our hearts. God is teaching us how to take initiative – a key ingredient in the mentality of a King. In the past we’ve been fearful of presumption (birthing an Ishmael) and afraid we might act and “not wait for his counsel” (Ps 106:13). My tour of duty as a pastor left a strong impression on me, “God’s people are very capable of hearing God’s voice.” God is elevating our confidence in our ability to hear from Him and walk with Him. It’s not that hard when you realize your seated next to Him in heavenly places (Eph 2:6). It’s God’s expectation that all of us communicate with him as a regular part of living. Hearing God’s voice is the sweetest part life in the Kingdom; an experience we treasure on a regular basis; our very “life” as a believer; the essence of our relationship with Jesus.
…to teach you that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the LORD Deut 8:3 NIV
Learning to Stand
– When we’re exposed to what God is saying we recognize it. If we read or hear something else it just has no impact. When the Holy Spirit is speaking or highlighting something it always catches our attention. Some of us are in a season of advancing and others are in a season of standing. When we do take initiative (having done all) the next activity is “standing” in the land God has given us.
Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Eph 6:13
The context of this verse is spiritual warfare; clothing ourselves for the backlash that comes from taking initiative. The enemy greatly prefers nice quiet believers that don’t try anything new. When we’re in the middle of “doing” something it’s a little easier to maintain the momentum and finish even if there is resistance. However, when you’re in the position of steadfastly holding your ground, it feels a little different; lonely, sleepy, lethargic, as though our hearts are resting through the night season when the voice of God is quiet. These cycles are a normal part of Christian life. Soldiers are never continually in battle. Knowing how to stand during the night season and the emotions that go with it is important to our spiritual health. Otherwise great victories can be followed by great shipwrecks. A season away from the fray is an opportunity to refocus on the Lord.
Awaken the Dawn
– So here’s how you can respond and stand steadfastly – just like David did. It’s a remarkable concept. He would awaken the dawn.
My heart is steadfast, O God; I will sing and make music with all my soul. Awake, harp and lyre! I will awaken the dawn. I will praise you, O LORD, among the nations; I will sing of you among the peoples. For great is your love, higher than the heavens; your faithfulness reaches to the skies. Be exalted, O God, above the heavens, and let your glory be over all the earth. Ps 108:1-5 NIV
I’ve always understood this verse to support early risers. Here’s how I see it now. We can end our night season and “awaken the dawn” when we begin to praise Him. David turns the slumber of a night season to daybreak by: 1) Remembering every good thing God has done in the past, 2) Thanking Him for his great love and faithfulness, 3) Exalting Him above every obstacle, 4) Filling the earth with His Glory, 5) Reciting his promises for the future, and 6) Scattering abroad our gifts to the poor (read the rest of Ps 108). See, it’s not about the the sun coming up. It’s about waking our hearts from slumber and seeing the Son come up.
– When your heart is fully awakened, you’ll hear God’s voice again. New ideas, new initiatives, and new faith will rise from within. You’ll look at mountains as opportunities to glorify God… and toss them into the sea.
Blessed is the man who fears the LORD, who finds great delight in his commands.
2 His children will be mighty in the land; the generation of the upright will be blessed.
3 Wealth and riches are in his house, and his righteousness endures forever.
4 Even in darkness light dawns for the upright, for the gracious and compassionate and righteous man.
5 Good will come to him who is generous and lends freely, who conducts his affairs with justice.
6 Surely he will never be shaken; a righteous man will be remembered forever.
7 He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the LORD.
8 His heart is secure, he will have no fear; in the end he will look in triumph on his foes.
9 He has scattered abroad his gifts to the poor, his righteousness endures forever;
his horn will be lifted high in honor.
– are a normal part of your walk with Jesus…. sometimes we’re advancing and in other seasons we’ve “done all” and we’re “standing” on our gains. If you’re in a night season, awaken the dawn with praise. Stand on your land and celebrate the goodness of God.
“Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” Eph 5:14
Life is an adventure. People are a blessing. God is amazing. We’re winning.