Nation Shaking Money

I believe God wants all of his people to have plenty of money. Yes, I know that’s a very controversial statement, but that’s what I believe. I know there are many verses that people use to say otherwise, but I believe a careful examination shows those arguments to be erroneous. Rather, I believe that “the blessing of the Lord, it maketh rich” (Proverbs 10:22), “if you are willing and obedient, you will eat the good of the land” (Isaiah 1:19), and “God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:8).

In fact, I believe that God wants us to have more than enough. I believe God wants us to be “enriched in every thing to all bountifulness” (2 Corinthians 9:11), that God “giveth us richly all things to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17) and that God “will cause thee to ride upon the high places of the earth” (Isaiah 58:14).

Now if that’s what God wants for me, I’m not going to argue. Rather, I’m going to find out how to obtain what God has for me. Of course many will disagree and say I’m after the world’s riches and all that. But that’s not true, I’m after God. In fact, I can say to God and man that I don’t care anything about the world’s riches and treasures. I care about the will of My Father. And His will is for me to have wealth.

Of course we can’t go through the entire subject of Biblical Economics in one post, but today I’m going to share some power principles that will build your faith, renew your mind, and help set you on the path towards obtaining your Heavenly inheritance, monetary style.

We all know Jesus said, “He who as ears to hear let him hear.” We can also agree that Jesus wasn’t talking about natural ears, everyone has those. He was talking about Spiritual ears. If you set your heart towards God, and ask Him for understanding and revelation of Biblical Economics, then you will receive. God has this wisdom at the ready and He wants you to have it. Really, setting your heart to understand, like Daniel did, is the key to receiving wisdom and revelation from God on any subject. You start where you are, and God will help you.

That’s what I did some years ago concerning Biblical Economics. I woke up early in the morning and told God, “Lord, I know that you want me to have abundant finances, but I have no idea how to get them.” Three hours later the phone rang. Completely out of the blue, my dad asked me to accompany him to Creflo Dollar’s Finance convention in New York. Hallelujah. If you want God’s Wisdom, God’s going to get it to you. God will move Heaven and Earth to help you understand. Trust Him. Just like He’ll give you money, He’ll give you knowledge. And let me finish by saying that I got one thing out of that conference – “If I’m going to prosper God’s way, then it’s going to be by seedtime and harvest.”

But let me go first to some more basic principles. I tell you right now that the wealth of the world is laid up for the righteous (Proverbs 13:22). There are some wicked people out there right now who think that they have tons of money. But they are just holding it for you and me. “The silver is mine, and the gold is Mine, saith the Lord of Hosts” (Haggai 2:8). All the world’s money is God’s. I believe that to begin understanding Biblical Economics, you must first understand that God has laid claim to all of the world’s money.

Now just sit back and meditate on that reality for a minute. If all the money belongs to God, then it doesn’t matter who holds it, or how it is transferred, God still owns it. That means God has an unlimited supply of money. If God transfers millions to put a preacher on TV, He still never relinquished ownership of that money. He can just transfer those millions again to do something else according to His will. Folks, I believe this is a powerful revelation, one that I don’t have time to detail here. “With God there are no opportunity costs.” God can afford anything and everything and He never sweats a dime. God has unlimited money. And if you will receive it, let me go on and show you how we do too.

You know that you have a relationship with God. If you believe that God raised Jesus Christ from the dead, and confess with your mouth that He is Lord, then you are saved (Romans 10:9-10). Moreover, “whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ (Messiah) is born of God” (1 John 5:1). When you accepted Jesus as your savior then you became born of God. God’s seed is in you (1 John 3:9).

Now please don’t take the literal reality out of those words. You think those are just words. But no, that is the reality. You are literally born again of God’s Spirit, and God’s sperm gave birth to you. I know that sounds crass – but the Greek for “seed”, which is the word used in 1 John 3:9, is “sperma.” We are God’s biological children. This is not just some spiritual word discussion. My spirit man is God’s biological child. I am God’s son, and you, if you are saved, are God’s son or daughter.

“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.” (Romans 8:14-17)

Now don’t just glance over that passage thinking you have read that a thousand times. Read it again in light of today’s study. You are God’s child. Therefore, along with Christ, you are God’s heir. If you are God’s heir, then you are a co-owner (with the other heirs) of everything that belongs to God.

Let me say that again. You are an owner of everything that belongs to God. You are not the sole owner, but you are an owner just the same. And you have considerable authority, rights and privileges in that capacity that you have probably never considered.

That has far reaching and astounding implications, but today we are talking about money. If God owns all the world’s money, and you are God’s beloved Child, His chosen heir, then you also own all the world’s money. And it’s time that we exercise our ownership.

I’m proud to say that God supplies all my needs. I live in a nice place and have nice things. I can boldly say in Christ that I sow bountifully and I reap bountifully. But I want more. Sure, I would love to have a few more security bucks in my account, and I am blessed in my storehouse, but I want more so that I can do more for God and see more of His will accomplished on this earth.

I have heard people talk about praying for a specific amount of money, and I’m fine with that, especially if you are talking about a personal need. But today I was praying for Kingdom building money. And my spirit just couldn’t settle on a specific number. Until finally it exploded within me, “God, I want NATION SHAKING MONEY.” “I want enough money to go into a Middle Eastern Country and flood it with Your Love and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I want enough money to go free every child slave on the planet and show them the freedom that comes from your Son Jesus. I want to go and shake the nations for You.”

God owns all the money, and as His legal heir so do I. I can call that money in now, because I understand the true New Testament purpose for abundant wealth is to show God’s Love to the world so that they will receive Jesus Christ. I can exercise my ownership and my authority, and nation shaking money is coming to me.

Now I know that we haven’t discussed all the mechanics of how you translate this reality into actual spendable dollars. But I assure you, it’s by faith. Faith is the force that translates God’s promises into your natural reality. So believe this word, receive it, confess it and stand on it. Then you must be led by the Spirit of God. That is the key to possessing, overcoming and truly triumphing in this world. Remember that the children of God are led by His Spirit.

Receive this word today. Begin believing God for nation shaking money. It’s going to take humility, it’s going to take trust, it’s going to take faith and love and many other spiritual forces. But glory to God, it can be had.

We are going to shake nations for the Lord Jesus Christ.

“Yet now be strong, O Zerubbabel, saith the LORD; and be strong, O Joshua, son of Josedech, the high priest; and be strong, all ye people of the land, saith the LORD, and work: for I am with you, saith the LORD of hosts: According to the word that I covenanted with you when ye came out of Egypt, so My Spirit remaineth among you: fear ye not. For thus saith the LORD of hosts; Yet once, it is a little while, and I will shake the heavens, and the earth, and the sea, and the dry land; And I will shake all nations, and the desire of all nations shall come: and I will fill this house with glory, saith the LORD of hosts. The silver is mine, and the gold is mine, saith the LORD of hosts. The glory of this latter house shall be greater than of the former, saith the LORD of hosts: and in this place will I give peace, saith the LORD of hosts.” (Haggai 2:4-9)


God's Internal Plan For You

How many times have you asked God to reveal His plan for your life? I have personally prayed over God’s plans for me countless times. The Bible says, “Consider well the path of your feet, and let all your ways be established and ordered aright.” (Proverbs 4:6, Amp). We are not just going to wake up in God’s perfect plan for our lives. We must work for this, pray for this, and live for this.

When my last employer told me to begin looking for a new job (because his company was going under), I really felt like my world was turned upside down. I knew God would provide, but trying to discern His will for my life became an all-consuming desire. Well here I am, 9 months later. I do believe I’m living in God’s will, and God has provided. But I know that God’s plans are something I must constantly seek. So I’m still praying, believing and studying. And God revealed something to me this morning that I want to immediately share with you.

It seems that whenever we talk about God’s plans for our lives, we are talking about what God wants us to do. Does God want me to be a doctor or lawyer or preacher? Does God want me to move here or there or do this or that? We are constantly focusing on God’s plan for our external lives. But I saw today that God has a plan for our internal lives as well.

Just like God has plans for what He wants you to do, God has plans for how He wants you to be. “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12:2) God wants us to be transformed. God doesn’t want us to conform to this age, with its lusts and problems. But God wants us to be transformed.

Transformed into what? Into the image of Jesus Christ. “For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.” (Romans 8:29). God plans for us to be changed into the image of Jesus Christ. Consider Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. Jesus walked in love. Jesus lived in compassion. Jesus never sinned. Jesus healed the sick, taught the people, worshipped, prayed, and served. Glory to God. This is our Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is the image and exact representation of God (Hebrews 1:3, Weymouth New Testament). And we are to be changed into that image!

“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2 Corinthians 3:18). We are to constantly look upon God and Jesus Christ. We do that by looking the Word of God. Remember that The Word is God, and Jesus is the Word of God made flesh (John 1:1,14). When we do this we will be changed and transformed into the image of Christ, which is a major part of our destiny in God.

Moreover, going back to Romans 12, God tells us that we are to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. Now “renew” in the Greek really means “renovate.” And these days with all the home improvement shows on TV we get a great picture of that. Renovate means to take out the old and bring in the new, to make new again. God says we need to renovate our mind. And we also do that by spending serious time in God’s Word.

So yes, God wants us to do things for Him on the outside. But on the inside God wants us to become like Christ. When we spend time in the Word, the Holy Spirit changes us and makes us like Christ on the inside, and our minds are renovated to further this change, from glory to glory. We are transformed from the inside out. Glory to God.

So I realized today that in a few minutes I received a revelation of at least ½ of God’s plan for my life. Yes, He has an outward plan. But He also has an inward plan too. And now I know it, Praise God. But as I considered this I thought to myself, “Well, that inward part is really not that big a deal, not nearly as big as the outward part.”

I then heard the Holy Spirit like He was in the car with me. “WHOA, WHOA, WHOA.” “I never said the inward part wasn’t a big deal.” “You said that.” And man did that hit me hard.

We have got to focus on the inner man. We have got to be conformed to the image of Christ. I believe that if we will focus on God’s plan for our inner lives, then we will quickly begin seeing God’s plans for our outer lives. In fact, I now believe that faithfulness to God’s internal plan is the key to success in God’s external plan. I even believe that if you aren’t working on your inner man, and being conformed to Christ as you should be, that God won’t reveal to you all of His plans for your outer life.

Consider Moses. Moses had a glimpse of being Israel’s deliverer, that’s why he killed the Egyptian. But until he had an encounter with God, and changed on the inside, he was not fit for his calling. In fact, He probably couldn’t even see it all. He likely saw himself as their deliverer, when in fact, God wanted him to be their deliverer, their prophet, and their leader.

If we jump out in what we think is God’s plan for our lives, without truly spending time with God and developing our inner man, then we may end up like the young Moses, without revelation of God’s full plans, and run out of town. I pray that’s not you.

Rejoice with me that we can clearly see God’s plan for our inner lives. Appropriately appreciate this word, and begin working harder towards your inward transformation today. Spend time in God’s Word, let your mind be renewed and let the Holy Spirit change you into the image of Christ. I know God wants you to be strong and do great Exploits for Him. I believe this is a great Word to help you on your way. Hallelujah.


A Christian Call To Prayer

A couple of years ago my wife and I were in Cairo for five days. More than anything, the widespread religious devotion touched me deeply. For example, on the first day our Muslim driver and guide took us to a locals-only type place for lunch. While eating, one of the five daily calls to prayer sounded. (It's a city of 18 million, and you hear the calls to prayer everywhere.) The two men left the table, washed and prayed, right in the restaurant. Every Muslim is called to pray at least five times a day. They must stop what they are doing, and take time to pray. You can’t tell me that their devotion to prayer doesn’t profoundly impact their lives. Can you imagine if we did that in our Nation? What unity! What devotion! What consecration!

I readily admit my prayer life has not been what it should. Of course I pray every day, but often they are short prayers, all about me and my life. I grow weary while praying, my mind wanders, and my spirit feels unfulfilled. I just finished Kenneth E. Hagin’s book “The Art of Prayer” and I am now committed to praying as God would have me. I said that I wanted this website to help people begin living a successful Christian life. I assure you, that won’t occur without prayer.

Prayer can accomplish anything. Let me say that again. PRAYER CAN ACCOMPLISH ANYTHING. Jesus said that nothing will be impossible for us. Well we have preached that and we believe that, but it’s time to make it happen. Anything I ask the Father in Jesus’ Name He will do for me. Wherever two or more are gathered, Jesus is there, and they have what they ask for. The effective fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much. I know I’m righteous, not because of what I did, but because of Jesus Christ. My prayer, if effective and fervent, will avail much. Glory to God.

I’m done praying little two second prayers, “God please help my family, God please help the people in Haiti.” It’s time we get serious about prayer. Paul talked about praying in the Spirit. Paul talked about groaning. Paul talked about travailing. Yes I’ve prayed in the Spirit, maybe for a few minutes. Now I’m talking about Spiritual warfare. It’s time to get on our face. It’s time to go before God with fervency. We are going to groan and we are going to travail and glory to God, in the Spirit we are going to bring forth.

Paul prayed for Timothy and he said his prayers built a memorial before God. It’s time we build some memorials. Paul continually prayed for many of the groups He had witnessed to (probably them all). We know God hears our prayers; we are His Sons and Daughters. If you really believed that God heard all your prayers, and God would do anything you ask, shouldn’t you pray more? Well, you and I both say we’ve believed it, but now it’s time we act on it.

We can go boldly before the throne of Grace. Jesus is our Great High Priest. We are God’s Children. If the effective fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much, then what would happen if we all began praying effectively and fervently? I don’t think we can really imagine. There is no aspect of this world that can’t change by the power of God. The financial situation can change. The political situation can change. Wars, terrorism, genocide, even abortion. Every situation could be changed, because all things are possible with God.

People say that God is in control, and I’m not disputing that. But it’s easy for nonbelievers to dismiss God’s goodness when this world is ravaged by hate and pain. God is in control, and God is sovereign, but are you going to say that the world’s problems are His will? I don’t think so. Is all of the world’s death and pain His will? No chance. So if they are not His will, is their nothing we can do about it? Yes, we can do something. We can begin praying now.

Jesus told us to pray that God’s will would be done on earth. Jesus wouldn’t tell us to waste our time. He wouldn’t say to do this if God’s will was automatically being done in the earth. And He wouldn’t say to do this if our prayers wouldn’t effect the accomplishment of His will. Praise God. Our prayers are key to God’s will being done in the earth.

So why do so many things clearly contrary to His will exist on earth? Because We ARE NOT PRAYING? Well, at least for me, that’s over. I’m going to pray in the Spirit and pray with my understanding. If the Spirit wills, I’m going to groan and travail and bring forth through prayer. I’m excited. I know that God’s will will be done in my life, because I can pray and see that come to pass. If you pray for anything, believing you receive, you will have it. (Mark 11:24)

I encourage you to take up prayer like never before. I encourage you to read Brother Hagin’s book, “The Art of Prayer.” It will only take a few hours and your life will never be the same. Our hands are not bound. God’s hand is not shortened. God’s hand is strong. With God all things are possible. We can see anything change in this world, if we will pray.

“If My people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”
2 Chronicles 7:14


God Loves And Accepts You Now

Today I saw something in God’s Word that really excited me, so I wanted to quickly share it with you. Deuteronomy 5:2 says, “The Lord our God made a covenant with us in Horeb.”

Now at first that doesn’t look like much. But the dictionary I use says that “Horeb” means desert, solitude, or destruction. Yes God had brought them out of Egypt, but they were in a desert place. They had made it into the wilderness, and they were struggling. This is also the place where God met with Moses in the Burning Bush (Exodus chapter 3). We all know Moses was struggling at that point too. He had left Egypt and had been tending the flocks of his father-in-law for years. He was away from his family, away from his people, and away from his destiny.

They were all in a difficult place, but God was looking to take them to a better place. Are you in a difficult place today? God won’t reject you. God wants to meet you wherever you are. God knows where you’ve been and where you’re going. God wants an encounter with you today. God will make a covenant with you right now, it doesn’t matter what you’ve been going through.

Any Christian who has spent any time in church knows that God will take you wherever you are. Pastor Dollar used to say during the alter call, “bring your liquor bottle, bring your reefer, bring it right up to the altar and leave it here” (paraphrased). I know that’s the attitude of God. Wherever you are in life, even if it’s a place of desert, solitude, and destruction, God wants to meet you and make a covenant with you.

I believe God showed me this verse as encouragement for some situations we currently have. And it truly stirs me up. I know that God made a covenant with me when I was in a bad place. I know God kept that covenant with me when I was in a worse place. How much more shall God keep this covenant with me, now that I’m in His place and walking in His will? I have nothing to fear, as God honored that covenant in the desert, God will honor it in this oasis I call home now. Glory to God.

So it doesn’t matter where you are, if you are a Christian then you have a covenant with God. He didn’t make that covenant when you were perfect or walking in His perfect will. While we were yet sinners Christ died for us. He made that covenant when you were at your lowest, in bondage to sin and incapable of pleasing Him. That’s the God we serve, who makes all things new and brings us out of darkness and into the marvelous light. Never despise the day of small beginnings. Look where you were (spiritually, mentally, and physically) when you began with God. If God honored His covenant with you there, you can be assured God will honor His covenant with you now.

God also reminded me of something from my past yesterday. He showed me something in a new light, something I hadn’t thought of in years. Something I see clearly now with wonder and praise for God.

Back in college I was definitely not walking in God’s plan for my life. I made many mistakes. But even during that time, in that sin, God began giving me dreams, and during my senior year my future wife and I began attending church. But even before that I can see many examples of God protecting me.

One night early in my junior year my roommate had some female friends visit. I didn’t know them, but one of them and I quickly became friends. We had many things in common and made plans to go out the next night. But the next day she apparently got in a big fight with her roommate. It became so heated she moved out, left school, and moved to another city, all in one day. My roommate told me this. I never saw or heard from her again.

You say skeptically, “Byron, you think God had that girl move to another city just to stay away from you.” Frankly I don’t know all the details, all I know is that God has protected me from many evils throughout my life, and as God reminded me of this, I now believe this was another example of God’s Divine protection.

How about that? God saw a situation that would be evil to me, or be a future hindrance to me, and God picked that situation up and moved it out of my city. HALLELUJAH! God’s going to take care of troubles you don’t even see yet. God will protect you from problems you don’t even know you have. Even if you are still in Horeb, God’s going to protect you and provide for you. God’s going to move your problems out of your city. We are more than conquerors. Yes we have to go through battles sometimes, but other times God fights the battles for us and delivers us before we even see the problem.

I can easily say that college was a Horeb-like place for me. It was a desert without an active relationship with God’s Spirit. It was a place of destruction where I was actively working to destroy my life. And it was a lonely place, where most of the time I had no God or Godly people in my life. But God made a covenant with me even before college began. And God held up his part of that covenant the entire time I was there, even while I did nothing to please Him.

I know now that God will always honor His covenants, with me and with you. If God was so good to me when I was lost in sin, what should I fear, what should concern me? While we were yet sinners Christ died for us. And if God be for us nothing can stand against us. Glory to God. I pray this encourages you today.


Successful Christian Living

Lately I’ve had some time on my hands. It’s not that I don’t have things to do. I have several clients and my daughter is six weeks old. But I’ve just been reflecting on the direction of our lives. The mindset behind Exploits for God has certainly evolved (with the Holy Spirit’s direction) since 2004 when I first launched the website. But recently I’ve been confronted again and again with this idea of successful Christian living.

Just one look at the headlines will make you want to cry. There is so much pain and need in this world your heart can feel stressed and powerless. (It’s so important during those moments to remember that you can’t do everything, but you can do some things.) I hate seeing people sad and hurting, especially children. I know God is going to have me do things about it. But I also hate to see Christians not walking in the fullness of God’s promises.

I can boldly say that I’m living a very good life and that it’s all in line with God’s will and plan for me. We’re healthy, we have appropriate finances, and we have no real problems. We seek God’s will, put faith in His Word, and regularly see Him powerfully move on our behalf. Sure, we must deal with things, sometimes very difficult things, but we know that God is for us (Romans 8:31) and God will perfect that which concerns us (Psalm 138:8). Unfortunately all Christians don’t live victoriously. What saddens me more is that many churches don’t preach the victorious possibilities in Christ Jesus.

As I’ve said before, I believe God wants us to have a good life. God wants us to be blessed spiritually, physically, financially, and every other ly. Remember that He says He wishes above all that we prosper and be in health, even as our soul prospers (3 John 2). We can live free of poverty, free of physical problems, and free of any other flesh bondage that the devil can throw our way.

Now I do believe we will suffer persecution for our faith. Also I believe situations will arise that tempt us to worry or fear. I’m not saying God causes those things actively, but they happen in a fallen world. The good news is that God will deliver us from every affliction (Psalm 34:19) and give us perfect peace (Isaiah 26:3).

I want Christians to know all that God promises them, and I want them to know that the physical manifestation of those promises in this life on Earth is a definite possibility. So we're going to work for that. I pray that you read with us as we begin going through God’s great and precious promises and the mechanics of seeing God’s promises realized in our lives.  Amen.


Christian Financial Increase Logically Defended

I believe God wants all Christians to increase financially. I know that’s a very controversial statement. People have written many books on the Scriptural arguments both for and against that position. I’m sure we could do the same here. I would give you a few verses showing that God wants you prospered. You would give me a few which you believe say the opposite. Then I would attempt to show why your view of those verses is wrong. You wouldn’t agree. Then you might get offended and never read this blog again.

But today I would like to take a brief moment and show why the arguments against my belief are logically flawed. I’m not saying that Scripture isn’t the foundation and source of my beliefs, but I think we could take a moment and just think through the arguments against prosperity and see their flaws. I’m also not saying this will fully persuade anyone, but it may help you. In the end, the Scripture must be the basis for your ultimate convincing on any issue, but I hope you’re blessed in your reading.

Let me first say what I believe about God and our finances. I believe God knows our financial situation and God cares about it. I believe God enables us to increase from wherever we are to greater and greater levels in our finances. It doesn’t matter where you are, God will help you increase. When you increase appropriately you will provide more to the Kingdom of God and increase your personal standard of living. So let me start by saying that no matter where you are financially, I believe God wants you to increase.

Now I know that is different from what most people think prosperity preachers preach. People who attack them just think they believe God wants us all exceedingly wealthy such that we can live in whatever luxury we want. (I don’t believe that, and most of them don’t actually preach that.) Let’s not go there, let’s just focus on this idea of increasing.

So I believe that God wants me to prosper financially and increase financially more and more. Of course many people don’t believe that. For someone not to believe that, they must therefore, and logically, believe that God either wants me to stay the same, or God wants me to decrease, or God doesn’t care. Let’s throw out the idea that God doesn’t care. The fact that more Scriptures in the Bible talk about money than nearly any other subject assists us in throwing that out.

So therefore they say God wants us to stay the same or to decrease. Or they may say that whatever increase you get should go straight to the Kingdom of God, therefore you should personally stay the same. So that last idea is really the same as you staying the same, and therefore those will be handled together.

The problem with the idea that God wants you to stay the same is that it provides no objective guidance for what is appropriate and what is not. If God wants me to stay the same, then God would suggest I only put in the level of effort necessary to remain at this financial level. In that case any efforts to work harder or to make more money would be completely contrary to His will. So in effect, God would be saying, don’t work harder, don’t work better, don’t try to do more, don’t try to get more business, don’t accept new opportunities that come your way, and don’t try to create any new opportunities for yourself.

Do you honestly believe that God is saying that? I hope not, but some people probably do. So to them I would say, do you have more money now than you did 10 years ago? Or has this recession hurt you financially like it has most? If God is always saying that you should stay the same, then whatever you earned last decade, any increase, was against God’s will. God would also be saying, don’t try to get back what was lost in the recession, you are good where you are.

So for you that actually have increased, or are trying to increase for any reason, all that is ungodly. You should return to a previous level. Now where does it stop? And that’s the big problem. Should you go back to living with your parents? What about your home, you could probably move back to the smaller place. You could do without that second car. Why don’t you just ride a bike?

So they would say that logic is crazy, God isn’t saying that. But according to their logic He is. God would want you to go back to a place where you have nothing, if all increase is ungodly.

Now a similar logic prevails in the idea that God wants you to decrease. If God wants you to decrease, then logically God wants you to decrease until you have little to nothing. Then they would try to stop their logic and say something like, “Well God wants you to decrease to have only what is necessary.” But that’s also wrong. Because maybe you could drive a smaller car, or live in a two bedroom instead of three. There is no end. Maybe you could move into a shelter, if you are really trying to decrease.

So I’m not necessarily proving that God wants you to increase, but I’m showing that the ideas that God wants you to stay the same or decrease are logically flawed. They are flawed because they include logical slopes into the ridiculous. And the only way off those slopes is to introduce arguments that have nothing to do with logic or Scripture (like this type of car is o.k., but that type is not). I recently heard, for example, someone say a preacher shouldn’t drive a Lexus. Well if that is what God is saying then maybe the preacher should just walk. God forbid the preacher has the wrong brand of bike.

God is brilliant and wise and logical. I don’t mean that everything of God can be perceived with the natural senses, but that all of God’s reasons and truths make logical sense in light of Scripture and reality. None of God’s positions contain inherent logical flaws. The arguments against God’s desire for your financial increase are completely flawed. Now if there was a Scripture on point that said God does want you to stay the same or decrease, then that would be different. I invite you to comment and suggest such a Scripture. But I don’t believe one exists.

I believe we should all increase with the increase of God. I believe we should be constantly increasing in a Godly manner in every area of our life. My confession is that “God is my financial advisor.” I trust God to provide for all my needs and to increase me always. I hope you do too.

The idea that God wants you to increase is perfect in its application and logic. Wherever you are, you can increase by the power of God. When you increase appropriately you increase for God’s Kingdom and your personal situation. There are no limits, there are no ends. You won’t immediately win the lotto or receive millions from the sky, but little by little your life will improve.

God wants you to ride on the high places of the earth (Isaiah 58:14) and eat the good of the land (Isaiah 1:19). Don’t accept the flawed positions (in light of both Scripture and logic) that tell you otherwise.


Joyce Meyer Ministries

The other day I received a letter about Joyce Meyer's upcoming conference in Tampa.  I'd like to tell you why I believe her ministry is a tremendous blessing to the body of Christ.  I'm not sure how I first learned about her, but I first saw her in Atlanta while attending law school.  I began watching her show, and (through my small amount of computer knowledge) I was able to access the route directory for all her archived episodes online.  So for months while eating breakfast I would watch several episodes.  (I probably wasn't supposed to do that, and after a while the link wouldn't work, but it blessed me.)

During that season I attended Dr. Creflo Dollar's church, World Changers Church International.  While there I learned a great amount of doctrine and the finer points of the Faith.  Although he always made it very practical, he would frequently go into great depths of spiritual reality.  But Joyce Meyer, while preaching profound spiritual truths, always focuses on how to improve your daily life.  One of her ministry's main themes is "Enjoying Everyday Life."

I believe God has called me to the ministry.  I'm not in the full time ministry today, but I know He has ministry plans for me.  So on the one hand I want to continue learning about the deepest realities of Christianity, but I feel like God keeps directing me to her teachings.  And now I believe I know why.

I don't know of a better teacher than Joyce Meyer on daily Christian living.  If you will hear the Word of God through her, I guarantee you will begin spiritually prospering in every area of your life.  She constantly encourages us to love others actively.  She shows us how to lay our lives down before God.  She teaches us how to treat others and behave in a Godly manner.  And there is much more.  Oh, I know you think all that stuff is obvious and basic, but I no longer think so. 

I realize now that if I'm going to prosper in ministry, I'd better learn to first prosper in my regular life.  If I can't do well in my relationships now, I'll never have proper ministry relationships.  I must learn to guard my tongue, renew my mind, love others, respect others, and do many other things so that I have a well-founded Christian existence. 

God doesn't want me to begin in ministry and fail.  And if I don't develop the fruit of the spirit and Godly behavior prior to ministry, it sure won't happen there easily.  I know that ministry can be hard and beset by offenses and struggles.  I need to get my joy, love, peace, patience and Godliness straight before I can help others with their lives.  Remember we are to remove the planks from our eyes before helping our brethren with the specks in theirs.

So I can honestly say that Joyce Meyer Ministries is a tremendous blessing to me on many levels.  Her teachings help me put off the old man and put on the new.  Through her teachings my mind is renewed to the way God wants us to live with each other.  Her teachings help me surrender my life to Christ so that I can be the blessing to others God wants me to be.  My flesh thinks I need someone to teach me about angels and the end times and miracles.  But my heart knows that it needs to grow and mature first.  God knows that too, and God has sent Joyce Meyer to help us all mature in Christian virtues.

So check out her website and watch her show.  Read some of her books and get some of her cds.  I promise you that the powerful truths she preaches, if you incorporate them into your own life, will improve your everyday Christian walk and prepare you for the mighty exploits God calls you to do.  Praise the Lord.


Night of Joy

On Friday September 10 I went to the Night of Joy at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. Being from Tampa, I've attended the event many times, even since my childhood. But this was the best year I can remember, so I thought to write a short post about it.

Night of Joy occurs every year, I believe about the same time. It features a number of popular Christian artists on several stages throughout the park. The rides are nearly all running, and you can even get there early to ride them before the concerts start.

For a while it seemed that Night of Joy had fallen off a bit. Last year they moved it to Disney's Hollywood Studios, a smaller theme park. The turnout was weak and the overall experience not nearly the same. But this year they brought it back to Disney World proper in style, with a sellout crowd, Chris Tomlin and (my personal favorite) The David Crowder Band. I also watched Barlow Girl, which put on a great 45 minute show to end the night.

I really want to encourage you to attend some Christian events or concerts in your area. I find them so refreshing. I saw many people, all ages, all ethnicities, worshiping our God. Sometimes we go through our days and feel so alone. Sometimes I feel like we Christians are so few against the masses. But no matter our numbers, we worship the One True God.

When you find yourself among thousands of other Christians you will feel encouraged and comforted. I feel that way especially at Christian concerts. Psalm 22 verse 3 says God inhabits the praises of His people. And Jesus said that where two or more are gathered in His Name, He is there. God was at the Night of Joy, right there with us as we sang His praises.

I don't know Disney's motives for having the Night of Joy. Maybe it's just a money making device. But so what? They provide a place for many thousands to gather and worship. I thank God for Night of Joy, and all the bands and people who make it happen. I thank God that we still have a country where we can join and worship in huge public places. We have so much we don't even think to thank Him for.

I left encouraged. I left excited. The Bible says we shouldn't forsake the assembling of ourselves together (Hebrews 10:25). I know many people use this as God's Word commanding Church attendance, and I'm not saying I disagree. But my point is that God knows we need each other. God knows that coming together and fellowshipping encourages us and builds us up spiritually. I'm sure gathering with other Christians has many other benefits, and I'm sure it's something we shouldn't neglect.

So attend church regularly. And whenever you can, attend a large Christian event in your area. Feel free to email me if you need help finding such an event. May God bless you, and thank you for reading.

Check out the short video below of The David Crowder Band's awesome show, right on the steps of the castle in the middle of the park. No comment on the voice you hear singing.  The video quality is weak, but it's worth watching just so you can see that it was an impressive show.


Get Over It

Today two negative things happened that made me think about how important it is to get over something offensive immediately. Remember that Jesus told us to agree with our adversary quickly. I'm sure He had multiple reasons for that statement, but I'm sure one is that offense actually hurts us deeply and blocks us from moving forward. I believe you can't truly move on from a bad experience until you forgive, and the place you get offended is the play you remain.

When you get in strife and offense you are spiritually stuck in a rut. Yes you may keep praying and pressing forward, but you can probably feel the difference in your heart when it's free of hurt and strife. We need to be free of offense and irritation at our brother when we draw near to God. Remember that Jesus said don’t even offer God gifts if you have something against someone. What a powerful statement! Now ask yourself if you've ever given a gift while being truly free of all offense in your heart.

Let's talk about getting over the small slights immediately. I know some offenses are huge, with drastic consequences for everyone involved. Those can take time and spiritual warfare to truly free yourself of them. For example, if someone physically hurts you, you're probably not going to be able to shrug it off immediately, physically or spiritually.

So let me tell you about today's two opportunities for offense. First I noticed a large scratch on my car. Now I know that's not something I could necessarily get offended at a particular person about, but it's still a great example. You know how it is, if something breaks you can get mad and then take it out on everyone around you. You start thinking about costs and imagining who is at fault, it can ruin your day.

But let's think about my car for a second. I have no idea who scraped it (maybe I did). It doesn't interfere with the car's basic functions. I really don't care if the vehicle has a mark. And I'm not going to pay to fix it anyway. How many situations like that do you encounter? These are small annoyances. You can't blame anyone and there's nothing you will do about them. We should start letting them go immediately.

Of course I was disappointed to have something like that happen, but I was glad that I've moved on from getting irritated about such trivial things. It's over and done. So keep that in mind the next time you notice some issue that, while annoying, you won't fix and doesn't matter anyway. The key is to not let it bog you down and mess with your spirit. You are essentially forgiving yourself and the entire world, even God, for such a thing. You are getting over it and moving on.

Now for the other issue. We recently bought some furniture for our coming child. Of course it came out damaged. I don't say of course because I expect problems, but it doesn't surprise me because I'm now looking for God to test me in this area. If I can't handle a damaged crib, I'm going to have a serious problem when I start encountering opposition to my taking the nations for Christ.

That went fine and I even sowed a seed by paying in full and trusting God they would fix it. Well today they showed up with a replacement part, but they didn't call to warn us before they came. Usually they give some lengthy notice. My wife is alone and 9 months pregnant. I'm 45 minutes away. This is irritating.

But while I thought about giving it to the guy for not calling me, I realized it wouldn't do any good. We're not going to tell him to come back later. He's only going to get mad and do a bad job if I'm rude. And really, if I had let him have it (as lawyers are wont to do) then I wouldn't be writing now. I would be repenting and feeling convicted.

So I let it go, they did a fine job, and all is well. Praise the Lord. What minor offenses are you allowing to seriously disrupt your day? Did someone steal your parking spot? Get over it and bless them. Did someone not RSVP to your function and then show up with two guests, hug them all as they enter and then give them great seats.

You see, and please try to understand this, when you begin blessing those that curse you, and forgiving and doing good for those who would irritate you, then you are truly acting like God. God sends the rain on the just and the unjust (my how we’ve misunderstood that verse, in the Bible RAIN IS A GOOD THING).

So don't sweat the small stuff, and be righteously proud of yourself when you correctly deal with life’s negatives. Then wait for others as God takes you from glory to glory. You can't forget, many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers us out of them all. Just like the crib is fine, God will perfect everything that concerns you (Psalm 138:8). We must trust God and in our steadfastness possess our souls, especially when these light afflictions try to disrupt our connection with the Spirit of Christ.


Take What God Has Given

One time I was on one of those hater websites that was talking trash about several preachers. They had a clip, that I must admit even surprised me a bit; where Kenneth Copeland basically said you don't have to earn your money. His said something like, "Did you earn Jesus? Did you earn salvation? Did you earn the Holy Spirit? Then why do you have to earn your money?" I'm sure I'm not quoting it perfectly, but it was very similar.

I admit that I thought, "Whoa, that's not right." But now I think he was right. Let me explain. (By the way I hate websites devoted to preacher bashing.)

Let us begin by agreeing that salvation is the greatest gift that man could ever receive. Remember that it is a "free gift" as Romans tells us. We don't receive this by works, lest any man should boast. But it is by grace you are saved, through faith, and that not of yourself, it is the gift of God.

While we were yet sinners Christ died for us, and in this way God shows His amazing love for us. Who would die for a bad person? God did. So you never earned Christ, none of us did. In fact we could never come close, so Christ was freely given to us all, sacrificed to God for us. So we have two questions to answer? Just how do we make Jesus' Sacrifice personally applicable, and what all did Jesus' death provide for us.

I hope you know the answer to the first, you make Christ' sacrifice applicable to your life, and you receive Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, when you confess with your mouth that He is Lord and believe in your heart God raised Him from the dead (Romans 10). You don't earn this; you simply believe and confess what God's Word already says. Then you receive Christ for yourself. Now what about the second question? What all did the death of Christ gain for us?

Did it provide for our physical health? Well by His stripes we were healed. Did it provide for our righteousness? He who knew no sin became sin that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. Did it provide for our financial situation? He was made poor so that we might be made rich. Did it remove us from every area of our lives that sin has touched? Absolutely! We are delivered from the power of darkness and translated into the Kingdom of Jesus Christ. We are redeemed from the curse of the law, because Christ became a curse for us.

Now you didn't earn your salvation? Why do you think you could earn anything else that Jesus did for you? Consider also the Holy Spirit. Remember Jesus sent Him to the world. You can't earn Him either. You must now realize that everything you will ever receive from God you receive like you did salvation, "by grace, through faith." You can't earn anything from God, so don't even try.

What are you trying to earn? It's true, when you work for men there is nothing wrong with earning money from them. But why would you try to earn from God? What could you earn? God wants to give you everything as a gift. If He spared not His own Son on the tree, will He not with Him also freely give us all things?

You can't earn the Holy Spirit. You can't earn salvation. You can't earn healing or health or provision or any other promised good from God. They are promises, and they are all yes and amen in Christ. They are gifts that God wants to give; you must stop trying to earn them. In fact, I believe that God is lately telling me that my attempts to earn things are blocking my actually receiving them.

Remember, we are interested in fundamental mindset changes here at EFG, and I believe we've found another. I MUST STOP TRYING TO EARN FROM GOD! Will I earn a ministry? Will I earn more money? Will I earn my health? NO, NO NO! I can only TAKE what His outstretched hand holds open to me. I can’t earn anything.

So there you have it. Does not God's Word promise so many wonderful things? You know it does. Now stop working to impress God, as if you will do so well God is going to make His promise manifest in your life. How many of you can say, “I worked and worked and worked and then it happened?” I know I can't. I can say that on some issues I built and built and built my faith, and then something happened, but I never earned it in that sense. I only increased my faith, so that I was able to take what God has already given.

And let's think about increasing our faith. Do you increase your faith by asking over and over and over? I know I don't. I increase my faith when I study God's Word and become more secure in His promise. When I got a hold of "Great shall be the peace of my children," I knew that everything would be o.k. with my wife's pregnancy. It's not that I've earned that reality, but now my faith in God's promises is sure, and I've taken what God has already provided, great peace for my children. And not to repeat, but why is that promise true for me? Because all the promises of God are yes and amen in Christ.

So I know I've said this before, but God reminded me again - I must stop trying to earn what He has already given. I can't, and I'm wasting my time. Rather, by increasing my faith that it's already available, and claiming that I have it now (read again Mark 11:23-24), I actually take what God has given. Now it's mine. Now it will manifest.

How do you know that you have something, like healing when your body still hurts? Because God's Word says you do. That's the place of faith - the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. And without faith you won’t receive anything from God (James 1:6-7). Without trusting that you have the promise while it is still unseen, without believing you have the substance of a promise still hoped for – you will never receive anything from God.

Now let me make one last point. As I was considering this today I kept saying to God - "Are you saying that even sinful Christians can enjoy what you've already provided?" As I've heard Paula White say, "You can't claim promises and violate principles." Here is what I believe God showed me. It's true that God's promises are yes and amen to all Christians. So it's true God's good gifts are available to every Christian, even those living in sin. They didn't earn the gifts; their bad behavior won't withdraw God's hand. Remember, your works have nothing to do with it. But you must not forget the operation of seedtime and harvest.

While God's hand is outstretched towards you, it is still true that while the earth remains seedtime and harvest will never cease. You are going to reap what you sow, and you are going to reap harvests on ungodly seeds. Are you in sexual sin or continual pride or strife? Are you greedy? What sinful seeds do you sow? (I hope none.) You must know that those seeds will bring forth harvests, and those harvests will block your enjoying the manifestation of God's promises.

For an easy example, if you are defiling the temple of God (1 Corinthians 6) by eating poorly, smoking, drinking and engaging in sexual immorality, don't be surprised if you harvest poor health. And also don't be surprised if that harvest blocks the manifestation of God's promises. I wouldn't begin considering which will trump, God's good promises or the harvests of sin. Are you seriously going to look in the mirror and say, "I sow all these bad seeds but should be experiencing this particular blessing?" The idea is to get the two principles working together to benefit you and the world.

So remember, you can't earn anything from God. So stop trying. Concentrate instead on building your faith and taking what God has already given. You do that by trusting His Word and boldly declaring you already have what God has promised. That’s faith. "God supplies all my needs, By Jesus' stripes I WAS healed." Sow the right seeds while doing this, and you will begin to see all of God's promises manifest in your life.


Move Forward In Your Calling

Do you want to do great things for God, but don’t know where to start? I know I feel like that regularly. We see countless preachers with huge churches and worldwide ministries. We love God and feel His calling. But we don’t find anything to do, no outlet for our gifts.

I just want to encourage you that God sees your faith and desire. God knows how you want to serve Him, in fact, God gave you that want. Jeremiah says God knows the plans He has for us. Ephesians says that God created us and planned specific good works for us to do.

Don’t give up hope. Just continually be faithful in what you have to do today. I know it can be hard, especially when it doesn’t look like much. This blog doesn’t have many subscribers, but I know God wants me to write here. If I’m not faithful in this little thing, how can I expect God to put me in charge of big things? If I’m not faithful to work on my own spiritual life, why would God put me in position to help the spiritual lives of others?

I know waiting on God can be hard? I know it’s hard to watch others minister when you know God has placed a powerful gifting inside you. But you can’t give up now. You can’t get discouraged, jealous or offended. It’s o.k. if no one else recognizes your gift or gives you an opportunity. You don’t want to serve them anyway. You want to serve God.

Here’s a great thought – God knows every single person on the planet, the gifts He’s given them, and whether they want to serve Him. God is thinking about you and considering your desire right now. God loves you and wants you to fulfill your calling more than you could ever imagine. Just be faithful, loving and patient.

Whatever you know God wants you to do, keep doing it passionately and faithfully. That is the secret to getting more opportunities from God, the seed you must sow for the harvest of greater works. Does God want you to witness to that friend? Do it and God will show you another. Does God want you to wake up and pray? Do it and see your life completely improved. What is God asking you to do? Obedience is always the required action to take the next step with God.

Go ahead and make a list of everything God has told you to do. Let’s commit to doing them together. Let’s agree that we are going to do everything we can to work out our salvation and fulfill our callings.

Here’s a list of some things God wants me to do:
•Wake up early each morning and spend time with Him.
•Be an increasingly loving husband.
•Don’t drink coffee or tea.
•Eat less red meat.
•Blog, Facebook, and Twitter for Exploits for God.

Those are the first ones that come to mind. Your list may be very different. God may not care if you drink coffee all day long, that’s just what God told me. But I’m going to commit right now to working harder than ever on those issues, and any others God brings to mind.

What would happen if we all got super diligent about doing exactly those things God has told us to do? Forget every other issue for a moment. What if you made those the central goals of your life? I believe our lives would open up to God’s will like never before.

I’d love for you to join this with me. It’s time we all rise and shine. It’s time we all start doing exploits for God. Tell us what God has instructed you to do. Commit to working on it with all your might. Let’s get going. Our faithfulness in the little we have before us is the key to moving ahead in our full callings in Christ.


A Supernatural Short Sale Story

Last Friday, after four months and 24 days, we closed on the short sale of our previous home. Now to you that might not sound so amazing, but for us it was an extremely difficult battle that revealed God’s love and power multiple times. I know that from the beginning the battle was the Lord’s, but we had to take some steps along the way to work with God to see His will come to pass. I wanted to share with you a step by step roadmap of this victory, and I pray that it blesses, encourages and exhorts you for your own personal situations.

I suppose the story really begins in September of 2009. While alone on a long drive I began seriously worrying about our home’s value, and the fact that we were probably seriously under water. On that drive the Holy Spirit had me confess, “The power of these mortgages is broken over our lives, in Jesus’ Name. Amen.” I received that Word into my heart, and felt better about the situation. I worried little about it for the next six months. Then on March 8, 2010 my father said he would soon have to let my wife and I go. He had employed us for the previous 3.5 years. This was no surprise frankly, as God had recently given me three dreams about the end of that season. But of course we began to seek God for direction.

God immediately told me to sell the house. Knowing that this would be difficult, and hating that I would essentially lose the thousands I spent on home improvement, I checked with God repeatedly. But three times a clear Word came, two dreams, and one vision of a plane. I knew God wanted us to go.

On March 21 we put the house on the market. On April 13 we received our first offer. I felt this was the miracle speedy offer from God, but that night I had a dream that my wife hated that offer, but another was coming. So we waited, and the next day we received a second offer for $30,000.00 more. Glory to God. We immediately accepted that offer and prepared the short-sale package to the bank.

By April 28 we had everything to the bank, and then we waited. I can’t tell you how many nights I lay there considering all the bad possibilities. What if we couldn’t make the payments? What if the bank said no? What if the bank wanted a promissory note for the difference (over $120,000)? The whole situation really, really disrupted my mental and spiritual life. But then God gave me a dream that the house would sell for $308,500.00. As that was more than the offer He told us to accept, I went to God’s Word. I found the third book, the eighth chapter, and the fifth verse.

Leviticus 8:5 – “And Moses said unto the congregation, “This is the thing which the Lord commanded to be done.”

Praise God, it honestly gets me emotional just thinking about it. God told me to sell the house. God had commanded the house to be sold. God was telling me that He would supernaturally line everything up so that His will would be accomplished. While I was fine with selling it, it wasn’t my commandment or my word, it was His. It would surely come to pass.

But we kept waiting. You know how it is, that refreshing Word from God grows cold, and the worries return. I began to get very anxious. Then I had another dream. This time I saw a sheet of paper that said if we paid $1,312.20 they would mark it paid in full. As that wouldn’t even cover one payment, I again went to the Word. I went to the first book, the thirty first chapter, verses 2-20. For brevity’s sake I will only put part of verses 17-20.

Genesis 31:17-20, abbreviated – “Then Jacob rose up, and set his sons and his wives upon camels; And he carried away all his cattle, and all his goods which he had gotten . . . And Jacob stole away unawares to Laban the Syrian, in that he told him not that he fled.”

I believed God was telling me to just move out. Now that’s a hard word. Some friends said that I could live there free for two years and let the bank try to foreclose. Being a lawyer and knowing some tactics, this was actually tempting. But I didn’t go that route. God said sell, not sit there without paying. I was going to sell. So I believed God was saying move out, but I waited two months before doing so. I was scared, and I didn’t receive what God had clearly said. Also, about the same time, I had a dream that the bank would let us off completely, requiring no further payments.

The bank said they would give us a first response 45 days after receiving the packet, but 45 days came and went. Then the bank said they needed more documents, which I immediately provided. Then a negotiator was assigned and she said another 8-10 days. That came and went. She said she needed more time. Then she stopped responding.

One night in early July my body headed for bed, but inside I was freaking out. What was going on? Were they denying the sale? What was up? The woman at the title company, who was really supposed to speak with the bank for me, is very nice and qualified, but I had felt maybe she wasn’t giving our file all the attention she could. I’m not mad, she had hundreds of files. I only had one. So I sort of considered getting involved. Now several people had told me not to, but as I was praying and thinking I had a vision of this woman at her desk with files all around her. I knew God was saying that she was over worked and not paying our file enough attention.

Now I didn’t take that as a Word to call her up and let her have it. I took that as a Word to get personally involved. I began calling and calling. I spoke to several people. I also went back and reconsidered the Word to move out. I came to believe that this was the necessary seed for the harvest of the bank letting us go. So we set to finding a new home. Eventually I spoke to someone at the bank who gave me a supervisor’s email address. Two more days, no response.

Then, like a flood, came the breakthrough. On July 8th we received a lease agreement on the place we believed God had for us. We were moving out at the Word of the Lord. We would trust Him for the sale to go through. THE SAME DAY, the bank called me. They essentially said, “Mr. Howell, we are so sorry that took so long. Your short sale was completely approved. You don’t have to give us another dollar. You can close anytime.”

You simply can’t imagine my joy. We had moved ahead on a difficult Word from God, and we were immediately seeing the rewards of obedience. Considering everything involved, God has freed us from around $400,000 in debt. Now that’s supernatural debt forgiveness!

That night I had another dream. God said to move immediately. I had planned on moving in a few weeks. But I called the realtor, we set it up, and God sent two angels that worked like absolute champions to help me move. We were completely moved two days later, Saturday July 10. But it wasn’t over. That night, while sitting in my new place relaxing and thanking God, I got an email. The buyer couldn’t close for over a month, they had to sell their home first. (As they didn’t have that contingency in the contract, they were now technically in breach.)

Well of course I was immediately offended and extremely irritated. This could mean more money from me to the bank. We asked them to hurry, so as to avoid that. But they didn’t hurry. More issues, more irritations. Everyone asking, when will you close, when will you close. Then I had another dream that I mentioned in another post. I was circling a fenced property with my father, who was asking if we would close. I said, “Praise God, it’s going to close and be alright.” The next thing I knew I was going right through that fence, and I was high up in the car, almost like riding in a tank, right onto the land.”

I knew God wanted me to confess my trust in Him, and that this would get me where I needed to go. Well that’s what I did. I cast all my cares on to Him as the Word instructs, and I trusted Him that it would close. And Glory to God, on August 13 it finally closed.

The power of those mortgages was broken over our lives. We were supernaturally delivered from those who had power over us. We were supernaturally released from a huge debt. With a mighty hand and strong arm God brought us out of that place and into our new home, which we are really enjoying. I don’t know what God has next, but I know that the sale of our home was something that the Most High God commanded to be done, and it was done.

Now maybe all this sounds a bit goofy or insignificant to you. But it sure wasn’t to us. I know lots of people are getting through short sales right now, and I’m glad for them. But that’s not our story. This is our short sale story, a victory for which God alone deserves all the credit.

And when I look at it, and consider the past months, with the dreams and visions, the verses and Words – when I consider everything, there is only one possibility – the All-Seeing, All-Knowing, All-Capable God desired that I sell my house. He wanted it done, He told me what to do, and He guided me through the process from start to finish.

Jehovah, the only living God, whom we have access to by our faith in Jesus Christ, also has plans for your life. He wants you to have that relationship with Him, where you can see His will and walk it out. Your life will never be as before. Working in connection with the One True God, there’s nothing like it. I pray that you draw closer to God, for I know He will draw closer to you. You will see Him work in your life, and you’ll never again want to experience life without Him. Praise the Lord.


Keep Going

I used to play a video game called “Big Buck Hunter,” or something like that. There were several variations revolving around which type of animal you hunted. It had an orange shotgun and you would move from one wilderness scene to the next. After each scene, if you did well enough to continue, the narrator would say very distinctly, “Keep Going.” More than ever I hear those words ringing in my head. My stepmother sometimes discusses how certain things stay with you for a reason. I believe my spiritually renewed mind remembers this especially when the going gets tough.

As you know my wife and I are going through some trying times. I just can’t describe in full detail how the Lord told me not to worry, then I worried, and now I see there was never any reason to worry. We have to develop a mental framework for going through trials. We all know that many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all. Do you feel like you’ve been delivered from every affliction? You actually probably do. Think how the Lord has protected you and blessed you. Think of all the times you were stressed to the max, only to see the situation work out. Maybe you didn’t see it as a miraculous solution at the time, but now looking back you can say that the Lord delivered you and it was all no big deal.

Remember when you didn’t see enough money to cover all your bills. I’m sure you can remember having that feeling many times. Can’t you think of a time years ago when you felt that? I know I can. But sure enough, here I am today. The collector never came calling, I never had to file for bankruptcy, somehow I just supernaturally had enough. You can’t always see how you are going to make it through a situation. You can’t see all the steps in the flesh, call this guy, do this side work, get that extra check in the mail. You can’t see those things if God doesn’t give you a revelation by the Holy Ghost. But what you can see is God’s Word, which promises that God will never leave you or forsake you, and that God will always make all grace abound to you so that you will always have all sufficiency.

So think about that. What if your AC breaks today and you are looking at $1,000.00+ in additional bills. What are you going to do? You can’t see (in the flesh) extra money coming. You can’t see your current money actually being enough? You simply can’t see God’s provision. But that doesn’t mean it’s not there. In fact, you have the more sure Word, which should be just as good to you as seeing the actual provision. (But man we know that is tough .)

So let’s say I get that AC bill, what am I going to do? In the past I would fret and worry and stress all the way to the day of the credit card payment. But now I’m learning I don’t need to act that way. If by worry I can’t add one cubit to my stature, I sure can’t by worry add one dollar to my bank account. So from this day forward, in the name of Jesus Christ, I’m done with worry. (Wow, another statement easier said than done!) But here’s what I’m going to do. I’m going to recall to mind God’s promises, which I HAVE NEVER SEEN FAIL ME.

I’m going to recite those promises before myself, before my family, before my house. My little dog is so filled with the Word that when she starts talking satan better look out. I’m going to remember that God is true. I’m going to trust Him, and I’m going to rest in His love. If I need to do anything, God will tell me. I trust God that if I need to do anything to ensure a more physical manifestation of His promises, He will tell me.

I have come correct on my worrying, and yes I have cast the cares upon God. In fact, let’s talk about that briefly. I can’t tell you how often people have asked when my house sale will close. In fact, in the Name of Jesus Christ it’s going to close this Friday. I had a dream that my father and I were going around a fenced property. He asked me if the house was going to close. I said, “Praise God, it’s going to close and be alright.” The next thing I knew I was going right through that fence, and I was high up in the car, almost like riding in a tank right onto the land.

I know God was telling me that when I vocally demonstrate trust in Him, and when I cast my cares and confidence onto Him, that doing so will supernaturally propel me victoriously into where I’m trying to go. By doing so I went right through the barrier and into the place. Praise God. I’ll never forget that.

So here we are, closer, but not quite there in the flesh. Here is the time to “Keep Going.” Have you been waiting a long time for something? Have you been going through a rough season for a while? I know you’ve been using your faith and praying and trusting God. But now it’s time to keep going. Now it’s time to shout God’s promises whenever you feel the temptation to worry. Now it’s time, to yourself, in the car, in the shower, whenever you think of it, just to say, “Thank you God. I trust you God. I know that your promises are true and it’s going to be alright.”

You know the saying, “When the going gets tough the tough get going.” Well I’m sure that’s true, but the reality is that as the going stays tough then the really tough keep going. We not only have to start strong when a problem arises, but we have to continue strong and finish strong.

God never called us to fret or worry. God never tells us to constantly strategize how to solve all of our problems. God tells us to listen and obey. God promises us sufficiency, God promises us food, clothing, housing, and everything we need. Think how much more He has promised. He will never fail or forsake you. Keep going, praise God, it’s going to be alright.


You Have To Let Go

I can't say how this idea hit me and I'm not sure I can put it completely into words, because frankly it just might go beyond words. But it came to me the other day and I know it's of God. You know I've been thinking about offense and not getting mad when people wrong you. I've also been considering not treating people according to their wrongs, and even blessing those who curse you. Then I started thinking about preferring others, and how we should work to regularly better the lives of those around us.

So I was thinking about these topics and revelation came. It was revelation because it's really several logical steps beyond where I was. I'm not sure how to draw a logical or perfect Scriptural map to the idea I'm going to present. But I believe it's powerful, and I know it's of God, so I need to share it.

You know how there are some verses that are so powerful we basically don't know what to say if we discussed really applying them and living by them? I mean some verses, when frankly considered, will leave you scared at what they mean for your life. Maybe that doesn't happen to you, but it does me. When I read the Bible, I'm measuring myself to it, and when I don't measure up, I have to count the cost.

If any verses have ever scared me, not in an ungodly fear sense, but in the sense of - "well, [sigh], this is going to be hard" - it's the quoted verses below. When you read these verses, put yourself up next to them, take a moment, read them again, and consider.

"If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for My sake, the same shall save it." Luke 9:23-24

Here's what I'm trying to say, and I really think I need you to close your eyes and imagine after you read this -

What if you could completely put down the flesh in its every sense? What if you could literally, in your mind, separate your flesh from your spirit, and then truly live after the dictates of the spirit.

I know, it's so hard to use words to paint this picture. Let me say this, if you are trying to walk and live in the spirit, then you must understand that disregarding the flesh is an integral step in that.

Your spirit is born again. Your spirit is in union and one with God. Your spirit is perfect and righteous and sinless. God can communicate freely with your spirit. Your spirit wants only God's perfect will. In fact, your spirit is now the real you. Your spirit just lives in a body because it must to be here on Earth. You also have a soul, which consists of your mind, will and emotions. So what if you could live and walk in the spirit, and literally give it the total ascendency, so that any conflict between spirit and soul or spirit and body would be resolved in favor of the spirit?

Now to make it a bit more concrete - what if, under the leading of the Holy Spirit which guides your spirit, you could literally lay down the flesh? Imagine being a completely love-ruled person. Imagine walking through life as a blessing to others. You never get unrighteously angry. You never get offended. You are always joyful. You are always laying your life down. You are blessing others and constantly looking for ways to bless others. You minister, you lay hands, you witness.

You aren't interested in sinful things because you are after the spirit and you are minding the things of the spirit. You are strong; you are energized to study, to worship, to pray. What if, as some put it, you could begin living from the inside out? You are guided and led by God's Spirit. You have laid down your life, your preferences, your desires.

The idea that just can't be contained in words is this idea of separation of spirit from flesh. Just like we are in the world but not of the world. You are in the flesh but not of the flesh. You are dead to sin but alive to God. You are crucified with Christ, yet you live. Only because Christ lives do you live. You have crucified the flesh with its affections and lusts.

What if you could literally begin living a different type of existence? If you could separate yourself from the flesh, completely laying it down, even to the point of not worrying about your own provision (which we were never told to do, see Matthew 6)? Could you completely place your life in God's hands?

Could you say to yourself, "I am here to be a blessing to the world. I don't seek my own, but I constantly seek for others. I am not here for me, but for others. God has me; I'm going to work for them. It is no longer I that live, but Christ lives in me."?

I tell you what, we talk about being after the image of Christ, and trying to be more Christ-like, but I honestly believe I'm starting to understand that now. You want to be fiery and bold and lead the masses to overthrow the ungodly systems of this world. Maybe one day that is God's plan for you. But first you must become a servant. First you must humble yourself and bless those who will never deserve it. First you must pour out yourself to feed and cover and clothe and heal and bless.

You must lay your life down as a sacrifice. That is what Jesus did. That is what it means to be like Christ. Now, Jesus didn't mean lay your entire existence down. But Jesus says that if you will lay down your former fleshy and temporal life, you will pick up your everlasting spiritual and supernatural life (See John 12:25 and look at the Greek).

I know what I'm saying makes sense, but to ever get there you must receive it by revelation. Study the Scriptures, especially about putting yourself down to lift others, and the Gospel, up. Pray and meditate on being like Christ. Will you lose your life so that you can save it?

Saints, I'm not one who will bash this church or that church. I'm not going to bash the American church v. the African church or anything like that. But I believe we can start to see something, shall we say, supernatural. To put it simply, I believe we are going to see Christians walking in the same demonstration of power and authority that Christ showed while on the earth. Remember He said, "My Father in Me, He doeth the works."

God worked in Jesus, and God will work in us. Yes, God has been working in men and women ever since Jesus, but I believe we're going to get back the full measure. Jesus said greater works shall we do. The world doesn't need another Billy Graham or Mother Teresa. The world needs Jesus, and it needs Him in you and I and everywhere.

If we truly laid aside every weight, if we truly matured, what would happen, what would God do through us? I aim to find out, and I hope you do too.


Don't Get Offended

Does any one out there have trouble with offense? Isn't it easy to get offended. Think about it. If you counted you would probably have ten chances every day before lunch. On the road, at the store, at work, at lunch, in line, you name the situation. If you really began to analyze your life, you could see countless situations where others are preferring themselves and slighting you.

Jesus warned us about persecution for our faith, and He says that He warns us so that we won't get offended when it happens. Jesus also said that we should greatly rejoice when we are persecuted and cast out. I've been there, and at first I was mad, but then I remembered His Words and felt better. But what about just the daily irritations of dealing with other people. Jesus said in the world you will have trouble. We need to discuss dealing with offense in our everyday lives.

If it weren't for Jesus I would probably get offended all the time. I know that doesn't say much for me, but frankly I largely blame law school. Have you ever crossed a lawyer? Unless they are a rare version you'd better look out. Law school teaches you what all your rights and remedies are, so if you wrong me in any way I can recognize it and I know what to do about it. Man that doesn't help my Christian life.

I used to say, thinking about forgiveness, that I would be the only lawyer who never personally sued anyone. But I tell you, where the rubber meets the road is when I have the opportunity. It's easy to say, "I forgive, I love, peace brother." But if you think that will be your knee-jerk reaction to a wrong, if you haven't really developed your love walk, then you have another thing coming.

I'm getting fired up. I can see now that I needed the offenses. I needed everything I've been through. I need to practice forgiveness and love in the face of irritations. If I can't get through these light afflictions now, I'm going to have serious issues as I progress along the path God has for me.

In fact, to paraphrase Paul, I [am learning to] take pleasure in infirmities, persecutions, distresses and every other manner of irritation. I want the power of Christ to rest upon me. I know there are serious opportunities for God to put His super on your natural. But when you hold back your temper and rebuke wrath, God is going to comfort you with a POWERFUL dose of His Spirit. If you will ever feel God's assistance, I believe you will feel it when you are choosing to forgive and love someone who wrongs you.

Remember Jesus. Forgive them for they know not what they do. Most people who wrong us don't even know it. Most people who cut you off on the street didn't even realize it. When people are rude, they think they are right. So get over it, the offense will only hurt you anyway. But, of course, you know what they did. You know they hurt you, you know you could get them back. What was Jesus' most powerful weapon, His mouth. Jesus could literally speak anything and it would come to pass, ask the fig tree, which I doubt believed Him. But when Jesus was being persecuted in ways we can't imagine, like a lamb to the slaughter He opened not his mouth.

I'm determined to be like Jesus. I'm determined to stay out of offense, I don't care what people do to me. God has not dealt with me according to my sins, according to what I deserved. So I'm going to do likewise. I don't care what you do to me, I'm going to bless and love and forgive you. (Boy I can't wait for God to put that statement to the test. I think I'll stay home tonight.)

I'm not going to go into detail on this now, but over a year ago God told me to do a major study on forgiveness. One of the most powerful truths God revealed to me is that forgiveness is a weapon. When someone or something wrongs you, not only will forgiveness shield you from the effects, but it will literally propel you forward in the Spiritual realm and defeat spiritual enemies and mindsets that are attacking you.

The world says sue and take your portion. The world says that to fight back and attack is the way to win. But I tell you what; God's ways are higher than our ways. You say fight back, I say forgive. We'll see who will get farther in God's plans for their life. And we both know that's true.

I once heard Pastor Jimmy Evans say that if you fight fire with fire you get a bigger fire. But if you fight fire with water you will put out that fire. All of hell is fighting against Christians with its hottest flames. It works through spirits, mindsets and even sometimes people. But if you will come against that fire with the Water that is the Holy Spirit, who always operates in love and mercy, then you will see your victory.

Get over wanting to see your fleshy desire on your enemies. Now we pray for them, we bless them, we want them saved. It's time we break out the real weapons of our warfare, which are might through God. You refuse to be offended, you show love when others show hate. You lay your life down and keep your mouth shut. I feel God saying this now so I'm going to repeat - if you begin to operate this way you will literally impress God. And then God will bless you.

It's not easy. But who wants easy. We're going to another level.


Though It Tarry, Wait For It

“I will stand upon my watch, and set me upon the tower, and will watch to see what He will say unto me, and what I shall answer when I am reproved. And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.” (Habakkuk 2:1-3)

If you read my last post you know that we have recently had some personal difficulties. Well, today I can shout, “Glory to God, I can see His hand on our lives and He’s mightily bringing us through.” Just to recap, we lost our jobs, put up our house for short sale, and have huge medical bills. This season of trial and change began in March, and we are still walking through it. But recently we have seen God move us through with His exceedingly mighty hand.

Within three weeks of putting our house on the market we had a great offer. We submitted our information to the bank for approval and then we waited. After some days I had a dream from God which I believed said for us to just move out, that this was the seed we needed to sow for supernatural favor with the bank. I was reluctant, but after nearly three months, and my wife’s desire to get settled before the baby’s arrival, we made the decision to move. We began searching and God enabled us to find and obtain a rental property. THE SAME DAY, yes, THE SAME DAY the bank called me and said our short sale was approved. This was after nearly three months of waiting, calling, emailing, and praying. They didn’t ask for a promissory note, they didn’t ask for anything else, they just approved it, as God repeatedly told my wife and I that they would.

How awesome is that? It’s a miracle, I don’t care what anyone says. About the same time I was informed that I would be given enough legal work to pay our bills for at least the coming months. And I know that when I need a new job or more clients then God will provide whatever I need. We still have the medical bills, but we are managing them by God’s grace, and I know when we (potentially) owe several thousand for the delivery, God will provide that too.

So you say, “Byron, it sounds like it’s over.” Well yes, I believe in the Spiritual realm it is over, but in the natural realm we have some more to go. The offer on our house, a standard written contract, said that the buyer had the cash and could close whenever the bank approved the deal. I felt the Lord lead us to the new place, got the divine confirmation by the bank’s approval, and the next day I heard the Lord tell me to get moving. God provided friends to help us move, and we are out, glory to God, with the nursery already being prepared.

But three days after we moved out my realtor called. He said that despite the contractual language, the buyer needed to sell her old house, and she can’t close until this occurs. Well you can imagine what I thought. That is a blatant breach of the contract. I’m an attorney, I should get very upset. I could sue her. But that’s the devil’s reaction, that’s the reaction of the flesh. We’ve come this far, now are tests of a different kind.

I keep hearing the above verse in my spirit. Though it tarry, wait for it. Wait for it. I’m waiting now. I’m not sure what all is going to happen, but I know my God. I know He told me to go. I know He got me the approval. I know He got me the new place, and I know He has already freed me from my troubles and provided for me. In fact, months before this situation started God led me to begin confessing, “The power of these mortgages is broken over our lives.” We believed it and now we see its manifestation.

But I can’t get upset and in the flesh. I can’t get in strife with the buyer. In fact, I need to pray for her and bless her. What can I leave in the house that will bless her? A pool vacuum, the pool cover, she can have them. I need to continue sowing, continue blessing. It was the operation of faith and love that got us this far, it will be the operation of faith and love that carries us through. Glory to God.

How awesome is our system! How awesome is our God! I could get all angry and threatening. But I know God is saying, “Trust Me and be patient.” I know God is saying it will all be fine. I’ve moved out now and I’m over that place. In fact, I bought new ac filters and water softener salt before I left. I’m not going to bow to the flesh. I’m not going to get into strife.

We can see the promised land before us, and we are moving ahead. Look again at the verse, it says, “though [God’s Word] tarry, wait for it, it will not tarry.” In the English that doesn’t make much sense, saying though it tarry, it will not tarry. But those two words are different in the original Hebrew. It basically says, though the manifestation of God’s Word waits and takes time, don’t worry, it will not be late, it will not be slack. Glory to God.

Whatever God has promised you, God is not slack concerning His promises, as some men count slackness. Has God promised you something, continue trusting Him. Can you see it, can you sense its manifestation? Even if it takes time, don’t worry. God’s promise will always show up in your life at the perfect time. It won’t be late, God won’t be slack.

In fact, the woman purchasing our house is about to sell her house, so we’ll be fine. But the bank only gives you so much time to close once they approve the deal. If we had received our approval months ago, then maybe she might not have been able to purchase, and the whole deal might have fallen apart. I believe God’s timing is perfect and will always be perfect for you, if you keep the right attitude and the right heart.

So where are you right now? Has God promised you a job, and you’ve had many interviews but no offers. Has God promised you ministry opportunities that you have yet to see, and your numbers only increase by one or two a week? Are you on the cusp of your breakthrough?

NOW IS THE TIME, SHOUT LOUDER, PRAY HARDER, KEEP PUSHING, KEEP FIGHTING. I know the temptation is greater than ever. But you must wait, be patient. Be still, and know that He is God. And you don’t just know that He is God, but that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.

By faith and patience we inherit the promises. Patience isn’t patience until you are tempted to show impatience. Just wait, pray and relax. God’s hand is not slack, you will surely see all His good word come to pass in your life.


Have Faith Don't Worry

Recently my wife and I have been going through a rather difficult situation. We lost our jobs and our former company is going under. We are short-selling our house. My wife is six months pregnant with our first child. We didn’t have company insurance so our medical bills are $1,000.00 per month. We need many things, and we sort of need them now.

Have you ever been in such a situation? I imagine you have. Now the issue becomes how we go through this time. I’m not saying I’m in the wilderness and I’m not saying that my own mistakes caused this situation. I’ve sought God and I firmly believe that this is a change of season. When the brook dried up God told Elijah to go to the widow. God always supplies everything we need, but sometimes the resource He uses changes. I’m here to encourage you if you are in a difficult time, and I want to discuss appropriate attitudes while in the trenches.

It’s been over three months now since we lost our jobs. I’ve spent many days fired up in faith, and I’ve spent many days frustrated. Some days the next place feels like it’s almost here. Some days I feel I have no idea what to do. I know you’ve been there, whatever you’re going through. Maybe you have a medical situation and healing just hasn’t appeared. Maybe you have a family situation that never seems to improve.

But God has taught me some awesome principles during this time. I can’t be down in the dumps, I can’t be discouraged, I can’t be downtrodden. No, I can’t see the next place now, but I know it’s coming. No, I don’t see the next job now, but I know God has it for me. I tell you that now is the time for patience, now is the time for faith, hope and love. Now is when God is watching and sees your faith. How will you respond?

Let’s be honest. We know that sitting around upset or angry will get us nowhere. We must first examine our faith. Remember that without faith it is impossible to please God (Heb 11:6). Without faith you won’t receive anything from God (James 1:6-7). Faith is the key. If your faith is not intact, you cannot be assured you will move forward. If you do and your faith isn’t right, it’s only because of God’s mercy and grace. But I’m going to have those with my faith. When God looks at me I want Him to see ever-increasing, unshakeable faith.

So how is your faith? Don’t tell me your faith is good if you are angry or upset? Don’t tell me you’re walking by faith if you’re out of church and God’s presence.

Now is the time for boldness. Now is the time for unspeakable joy. This is where you show God that it doesn’t matter what goes on in the world, you trust Him. In the world you will have trouble, but Jesus overcame the world. And what victory overcomes the world, even our faith. Right now this world seems to be experiencing one crazy situation after another. But you can rise above all that. I know you want to be there now, have it now, do it now, but it just doesn’t work like that.

By faith and patience we inherit the promises. Cast not away your confidence which has a great recompense of reward. Be anxious for nothing but in everything by prayer and supplication let your requests be made none to God. Don’t use vain repetitions; your Father knows what you need before you even ask. Only seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness, and everything you need will be added unto you.

What an encouraging group of verses. Right now get fired up. Turn to someone, your dog if you must, and boldly say, my God supplies all my needs. I have everything I need. My God created me for good works and the Spirit reveals them to me. First John says I have an unction and I know all things. I know where to go and what to do. Glory to God.

I don’t care what happens in my life. When God looks down He’s going to see a bold, thankful, joyful, faithful, rejoicing Christian. Now sometimes our sins or harmful actions bring negatives on us. If you were a bad employee, maybe you should have been fired. If you smoke, you can’t yell at God if you get sick. But if that happens God will reveal your errors to you. Then you can repent and get back on track. Praise the Lord.

It’s gut check time. Every day it gets harder, longer, more annoying, more stressful. What are you going to do? I’m going to say it loud and proud; I have everything I need because God provides for me. I’ve never seen the righteous forsaken or his seed begging bread, and I’m in Christ and righteous and I won’t be the first, glory to God.

So where are you at right now? Are fear, doubt and unbelief beating you up? Are you out of the Word, out of church and out of God’s presence? Are you still going through the motions but losing your fire? Go back to God’s Word. Go back to God’s promises. Go back to your revelation knowledge that God’s Word is true and God never lies and that all His promises are yes and so be it to those in Christ.

Tell God you love Him, you trust Him and you give Him your life. Ask Him for wisdom, because He graciously gives it liberally. Your confidence and your expectation will determine your harvest. Decide that they will be where they need to be, standing on God’s Word and God’s faithfulness.