Saturday, October 31, 2009


Hi all. I know I wrote that my next blog will be Part II of "Taking Inspiration From Hosea," and I am working on it, but I feel pressed in my spirit to speak out about the major demonic activities that are occurring today, and indeed have been ramping up over the course of the last few days until this day known as "Halloween."

This "holiday" (or "helliday" as I like to think of it) is a time of great evil as witches, warlocks, occultists, and covens around the world see it as a great and notable day of celebration and the indoctrination of many unwitting victims into their occultic/Satanic activities.

On this day, people around the world, and indeed many Christians, some out of ignorance and others out of a stubborn holding on to worldly frivolity, fully embrace the occult, witchcraft and Satanism as they "trick or treat," carve out pumpkins, wear costumes that glorify sin and death, and use the day in general to glorify fear, death, blood drinking, murder, demonism, witchcraft, the paranormal, sexual sin, and the list goes on and on.

If you're a praying Christian who reads your Bible then you know what I'm talking about because you must be experiencing and/or discerning the spiritual trouble in the "atmosphere" throughout the last few days as well as and especially today.

Many of you are probably under attack as the demonic hordes are out in full force taking advantage of the open doors given to them by people participating in Halloween as well as trying to fulfill the curses that many witches and warlocks place on people, including and especially on Christians.

While the “curse causeless” cannot come upon you (Proverbs 26:2), God is allowing you to discern the darkness in order that you might fight back through spiritual warfare.

I hope you're doing so as we all need to be, including myself. It's easy to get lazy, but let's commit ourselves to battle during the time that God is giving us this discernment and the experiencing of Halloween's spiritual darkness.

All we have to do is open our mouths in prayer and spiritual warfare as we let God’s Word speak through us. God may not require you to fight very long, just start out in battle and you will know by His Spirit when He has released you. God knows what you can handle and He's not going to put a burden on you that you can't bear. Just relish the privilege that He is making you aware of what is going on and is using you as His battle-axe against evil.

But back to the topic of Halloween, many people who think they are harmlessly participating in this “holiday” by decorating their homes, dressing up, etc., have no idea that they are unwittingly inviting demons to further entrench themselves into their lives. It is a terribly sick and repulsive day for anyone who loves God and recognizes that demons are being allowed so much access to so many people.

I want to caution any and all readers against participating in Halloween on any level.

When I say "any level" I also include the parties and activities held by Christian Churches that are supposed to pull people away from honoring the Satanic aspects of Halloween to some more harmless fun.

This seems like a good motive, but how is it a proper response for us to hold festivals/parties when the only thing we should be focused on when we gather on the day the world calls Halloween is prayer and spiritual warfare against the demon spirits who are so active? How is it that we would allow ourselves to be distracted from the battle at hand by a celebration, even one that is supposed to be an "anti-Halloween" party? (Church, we are indeed asleep at the wheel. Is it any wonder we are in so much trouble?)

There are many issues on such a day that require prayer and spiritual warfare: we need to be holding up our brothers and sisters in Christ who think it is o.k. to celebrate such a demonic day, and we also need to fight against the plans, strategies, and tactics of the enemy who is using Halloween as a major offensive in their attempts to rob, kill and destroy us and everything for which we stand.

For us, this is a day of battle, not of frivolity, even if that frivolity is in the Church under a different auspice than that of Halloween. This is especially true since that frivolity takes our eyes off of the very pressing need for us to put our spiritual armor on and go into battle.

Will you take up the fight tonight, or will you go to Church and drink punch out of a plastic party cup? Will you mourn the sin that is going on in the world and in the Church, sin which pains our Lord to watch, or will you lift that plastic cup of punch in cheers with your friends?

It’s time we realized that this day is not a day of celebration for any Christian, but one of mourning of the sins of the world as well as the Church, and also a day of battle.

I hope you’ll join in by spending at least some time in prayer and spiritual warfare this afternoon or tonight. May God’s blessing be upon you as you do so, in Jesus’ mighty name. A-men.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Taking Inspiration from Hosea

I read the Book of Hosea last week and as I did I couldn’t help but feel the words God gave him for Israel are very similar to that which should be spoken to the Church in the United States today.

The Hebrew people were in a lot of trouble with God during Hosea’s time due to their failure to honor Him and His Word, and much of this short fourteen chapter book was spent telling them of the behaviors God had taken issue with and how He would bring judgment upon them for their sins, and that after doing so, He would also bring restoration if they would only seek Him.

It seems to me that we here in the U.S. are in the same condition as the Hebrew people of Hosea’s day.

When I say “we,” I of course could be speaking of the U.S. as a whole: the sins our nation commits and exports on a daily basis have piled up to the heavens, what with all the abortions, pornography, adulteries, fornications, whoredoms, immodesty, pride, vanity, lying, deceit, hatred, violence, murders, greed, thefts, covetousness, cursing, witchcraft, etc. and etc.

One could go on and on.

Yes, our nation is in a great deal of trouble, no doubt about that.

But for the purposes of this blog when I say “we,” I mean we the people of the Church of Jesus Christ. We are the ones who are in trouble first.

Why? Because 1 Peter 4:17 tells, 

“For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?”

In light of this scripture it's easy to wonder how can God judge the world for sin if He doesn’t first judge us, especially when the same sins that the world freely partakes of are also practiced with little hindrance in the Church.
In addition to the worldly sins as listed above in which the Church finds itself entrenched (and perhaps more foundationally problematic), false doctrines and the “traditions of men” are more honored in the Church than the Word of God, which means we aren’t standing on the solid rock of the Word, but on the shifting, wind-blown sands of the teachings of man.
The latter error – following traditions of men – is a huge impetus for the former – practicing worldly sins – for if we were teaching, preaching, receiving and living the correct doctrine straight from the living Word of God we would be far better equipped to resist worldly iniquity.
Yes, the U.S. Church is in trouble, big time.
Also, because we have been blessed with the entirety of God’s Word with little interference from those in secular power, we as a consequence are held to a higher standard, “For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required…” [Luke 12:48).
But even with that higher standard the Church isn’t even attaining to the bar of superficial morality set by the secular culture of the United States during the 1940’s and 50’s. The Church’s present day immodesty alone proves that we as a people have dropped below that level long ago.

No, we the members of the Church of Jesus Christ in the good ol’ USA are not a holy people.

I don’t think I’m saying anything surprising or new. Each person reading this blog knows of his own personal issues and can readily see that many of us in what calls itself the Church these days are not truly fighting sin as if our lives depend on it, and as a consequence we are not attaining to the holiness portrayed by the Biblical fathers of our faith.

To purify oneself means adopting a lifestyle which is obedient to God and His Word while learning to detest and cease the practice of sin. Why? Because sin is the opposite of obedience. Sin is denial of and opposition to God’s commands, commands that were given so we could know how to properly behave in order that we may love Him and others.

Again, we as a people are not living out consistently obedient lives to the Lord and as a consequence are walking out lives of sin. I should rephrase this statement a bit because when I say “we” I am speaking in general terms catching the sum of all Christians in the U.S. in one net, but some of us are indeed living holy, obedient lives, though those of us who are totally committed to doing so amount to very few. And those very few obedient ones who may read this blog are surely only nodding in agreement and don’t mind that I’m using the more global “we” in the description of the Church’s behavior.

But returning to the matter at hand, as mentioned before, our doctrinal errors are at the root of much of the Church’s problems with sin. For example, a large majority of the Church does not practice or teach deliverance, and thus only a tiny percentage of the members of the Body are actually casting out the demons attempting to lead them into sin. Those of us not doing so are consequently unable to win our battles against iniquity because we are not picking up the weapons God has given to enable us to do so.

Demons also know that when they can persuade us to accept and embrace just one type of sin then we will all the more easily fall into other types, even in areas in which we had little trouble before.

There are lots of spiritual sayings to describe this phenomenon:

“A little bit of leaven leavens the whole lump.”

“Sin begets more sin.”

“Sin takes you farther than you want to go, makes you stay longer than you want to stay, and makes you do things that, in the end, you don’t want to do.”
Jesus put it another way,

“When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none. Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished. Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first..." (Matthew 12:43-45).

One could envision from Jesus’ description that a demon’s invitation to you to sin is as if you’re having a dinner party and a there’s a knock at the door. You look through the peephole to discover an uninvited, unwanted guest who is very dangerous. But instead of telling him he is unwanted and commanding him to leave you instead crack the door to hear a little better what he has to say. As you begin to hear his plan you (seemingly unknowingly) open the door a little wider and all of sudden he’s standing over the threshold and blocking you from closing the door. You let him in further and with incredible speed, seven more of his friends are also pushing through. Your dinner party is now crashed and ruined, as these intruders aren’t so friendly once they’re inside and can now create absolute havoc.

When sin and demons get in the door and fully invade, they know then that they can blind us to our sin. They “poke our eyes out” as it were in the same way the Philistines poked out Samson’s (Judges 16:21) and this blindness helps us to embrace sin even further.

The backsliding Christian in this state will not only accept and justify his own sins but will see others who refrain from and speak out against sin as legalist fuddy-duddies at best and the enemies of God at worst.

Remember, the religious leaders and zealots of Jesus’ day were those who desired to kill Him most! And what did Jesus call them?

“…blind leaders of the blind…” (Matthew 15:14).

What were they blinded by? 1) Their false doctrines and traditions of men, and 2) the resulting sin.

The only way to break free of this type of blinding sin is for the person to surrender his life to God and ask God to reveal the sins he can’t see.

The sinner needs to say as David did,

“Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting” (Psalms 139:23-24).

Without continually making this simple request throughout one’s Christian walk, even those of us who have accepted Jesus as Savior will most likely continue in the stubborn pursuit of sin, all the while remaining blind to our own sinful condition.

This is the main issue in the Church, an absolute blindness to the nature of sin and its hold on us as a corporate body.

We as the Church in the USA do not spend enough time sincerely asking God to search us, and oftentimes when we do we are not really looking for a reply from the Lord, as deep down we don’t really want to change. This is obvious because the answers He responds with are often ignored or seen as “not from Him” as what the Lord requires always calls for a letting go of the world and of sin, and many of us don’t want to do that. The process can appear to be painful and sacrificial and many of us aren’t willing to undergo this perceived discomfort and loss.

This is especially true in the U.S. Church when it comes to traditions of men. When God asks us to let go of them because they are against His Word we cannot grasp how or why these traditions could be sins against Him. We also imagine that if we were to stop those traditions, then we would be seen as peculiar by the rest of the Church and too many of us are way too worried about what others think, and having such an attitude, we are even less willing to consider God’s voice may be leading us out of some of these long-held yet anti-biblical traditions. We close our eyes and ears to the simple Word of God and continue to our hold on man-created doctrines that allow us to continue our traditions.

This happens because many of us have failed miserably as individuals to read our Bibles enough to know what God actually expects. This is the main reason that when He does respond to our asking Him to search us, we are not ready for His response. We don’t know His Word and therefore don’t know His voice or even when it is Him who is speaking to us. As a result we make no effort to change, even as the Pharisees and Sadducees made no effort when God sent His Word to them through John the Baptist and then His Son Jesus Christ.
It’s this not knowing the Word of God that enables so many of us to continue in sins of ignorance, which feeds right into a word that God gave to Hosea,

“My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee…” (Hosea 4:6).

According to this scripture, in God’s economy there is no “I didn’t know, I was ignorant” escape clause. This should especially be so here in the U.S. where, as stated before, we have enjoyed unlimited and unhindered access to the Word of God for so many years.

And yet we (and again, I’m not talking about the world here but the Church), we, the ones who should be reading our Bibles and ARE NOT, consequently don’t realize the depths of sin that we’ve waded into.


Not waded.

Wading implies that we’re in shallow waters, but indeed many of us have swum into and have remained in the depths of sin, deep down in the dark, filthy, murky waters of iniquity.

Our lives are so out of order that we as a people are participating in manifold sins on a daily basis. Many of us seem to be doing very little to exhibit self-control in the desires and leadings of the flesh.

In addition to the doctrinal errors, all the sins of divorce, porn use, adultery, abortion, alcoholism, etc. so readily apparent in the secular world can also be found in large measures within the Church.

I’m not just talking to you dear reader. I am under attack as well. We all have areas of weakness demons want to exploit.

The question is are we fighting against these sins? A large majority of us aren’t fighting hard enough.

I personally feel I need to show more vigilance. Actually, in certain areas I know for certain that I need to fight with more determination. Demons would love for all of us to consider certain behaviors that God forbids as acceptable and will do everything in their power to soften us in those areas.

What about you? Are there areas in your life that need to be looked at more closely so that you can gain the victory? Or, do you believe the false gospel that it is a matter of fact that you can’t stop sinning so why try to fix something that can’t be repaired?

Many other questions remain:

Are we as the people of God determining to hate the sins that God hates even though our flesh can thoroughly take pleasure in those sins?

Are we fighting the demons who tempt us by daily taking up our crosses and following after the Lord (Matthew 16:24), that is, are we dying to our fleshly selves in order that we might live above sin and walk in the Spirit, which is life?

Are we reading our Bibles daily to learn the ways of God so that we may identify the sins in our lives that are offending Him, both doctrinal sins and those of the flesh?

In my next blog I will more directly address many of the Church traditions that do not line up with the Word, but may I ask you a couple questions in advance of your reading it?

When these traditions/practices are presented as unbiblical will you be able to discern by the Word of God if what I say about them is true? That is to say, have you read the Bible enough to know if what I present is Biblical, or will you just go by some gut feeling?

Therein lies the rub. If you don’t know the Word of God for yourself, how do you know if what anyone tells you from the Word is actually true or a just a twisting of the Word?

I encourage you, dear reader, to spend time reading your Bible each and every day. Tackle three chapters a day and you can read the entirety of scripture in a year. Why not start with the Book of Hosea?

Also, read it out loud because “…faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17). It’s time you got the Word deep down in you so you will not be blown about by every false wind of doctrine that comes your way.

In the meantime, ask God to help you look within for whatever sins may bind you and pray to Him to help you get free. Ask Him to uncover not only the worldly sins that are easier to identify in your life, but the traditions of men you may be following that may be leading you astray as well.

It’s time for us to clean up our acts as members of the Body of Christ in the U.S., and indeed the entire Church worldwide needs to do so, but let us begin with our individual selves.

Let us judge ourselves now, so that we may avoid the judgment of God. Let us make ourselves right without Him having to move His hand to force us to do so. His hand is already moving. Can you see it? Be a leader in changing yourself for Him and others, when God’s judgment comes with greater intensity will see your efforts and want to do the same.

God bless you and look for further messages that address the Church’s traditions that are hamstringing us in our pursuit of a Holy God.

It seems like many of us have either given up this fight against sin, or, because of false teachings, never took up the fight to begin with.

A great part of the blame for our laxness falls upon the sugary sweet “gospel of grace” embraced by most American Churches that has allowed many of us to erringly believe we can go on living in sin without eternal consequences because according to this false gospel we are all “sinners” and will never be able to stop sinning.

The hushed implication is, “Why should we even try to stop sinning if it’s impossible to do so?” If this gospel is true that we can and will never discontinue our iniquity, and that this is not really a problem because the blood of Jesus covers all of these sins, why then we have nothing to worry about. We can just go on sinning.

But from the scriptures we learn that the blood of Jesus does cover our REPENTED sins, but sins we stubbornly continue to practice and hold onto, the ones that we do not repent of, are they still covered?

Think about that question as we address the matter further.
When sin is allowed a foothold and is not repented of, that means that it has become accepted, and once accepted, the next logical step is to embrace it.

Those of us who get as far as embracing sin, that is, we have decided to allow it full reign in our lives without standing up to it, are in big trouble. It is of little consequence if we’ve said the sinner’s prayer and believe we have salvation if we continue in sin.

Let me tell you why.

No, better that Jesus should tell you Himself, He said,

“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity (Matthew 7:21-23).

So we see from this scripture that God does indeed require a standard of holiness, and there are at least two measures as listed in this passage that determine if we meet that standard. They are:

Do we do the will of the Father?

Do we practice iniquity (sin)?

We can readily see that Jesus’ standard of holiness is much higher than the standard that has been set by today’s “we will always be sinners” American Church. How is it then that Jesus says one thing with regard to His expectations, and yet we preach, teach and believe another?

While most of the Church is right in the sense that no one can be saved without believing in Jesus’ sacrifice and shedding of blood, it is not enough merely to believe that Jesus did this.

According to the epistle of James that most of the Church believes is part of the Canon, when it comes to believing in one God “…the devils also believe, and tremble” (James 2:19).

Just believing that Jesus suffered on the cross for our sins, died, was buried and resurrected alone does not gain us eternal salvation, even though it is the most critical first step.

But the fruit of this eternal salvation blossoms when this belief in Jesus’ work here on earth and subsequent resurrection actually draws us unto holiness.
John tells us the following with regard to those who seek an eternity with the Lord,

“…every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure (1 John 3:3).

Monday, October 12, 2009

To Wait, To Hope

I remember when I first studied the Spanish word "esperar" and learned that two of its meanings were "to wait” and “to hope."

This caught my attention because it occurred to me that there is a direct relationship between waiting and hoping.

When you wait for something you generally have a hope tied to that waiting, else you probably wouldn’t wait for it. Your hope is that the outcome of your waiting will be positive or beneficial.

Of course, people wait for negative outcomes to happen as well, but I realize as I write that this type of waiting is more associated with "worrying,” an activity Jesus warns against, saying “Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. (Matthew 6:34).

But back to the positive/hoping kind of waiting: when I think of it, for some reason my childhood visits to Disney World come to mind; in particular waiting for rides in lines that zigzag back and forth until you finally arrive at the spot where it’s your turn.

My favorite ride was the go-carts and it’s no surprise that the cues for this one seemed, at least to me, always to be the longest!

But you know what? The longest lines were probably for the Space and Thunder Mountain roller coasters, but because I was more excited for the go-carts, that one seemed a lot longer, probably, dare I say, definitely, because I wanted it more.

And such it is with our lives: the desires we hold most dear seem to take the longest to be fulfilled. Sometimes they don’t actually take longer, but only appear to do so because the strength of our desire makes us all the more impatient.

There are many dreams we all want out of life, but the ones we want the most are more often at the forefront of our minds and thus require more patience than the smaller desires that more easily slip out of our thoughts.

During so much of our lives God is teaching us patience, teaching us to wait on Him, using these times to prove to both Him and ourselves that He indeed is the number one priority in our lives, that He is more than enough, and that we could live on and actually be fulfilled and content in Him without even getting the things we are hoping and waiting for.

This is not to say that God doesn’t want us to have desires. He actually promises through a Psalm of David, “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart” (Psalms 37:4).

But it’s in the space in the “in-between,” in the waiting, that we find our struggle and where our faith is tested. Will we actually continue to delight ourselves in the Lord as we wait on these desires that burn so hotly in our hearts?

Abraham experienced such a test. God had promised Abraham that from him would rise a great nation (Genesis 12:2), as many people as the dust of the earth (Genesis 13:16)! When he received that promise he was childless and would remain so for many years.

In fact, from the initial promise to its actual fulfillment in the birth of Isaac, Abraham waited more than twenty years! According to the Holman Bible Dictionary he was 75 when he received the initial promise, and Isaac was actually born when he was 100! And, mind you, his wife Sarah had passed out of her child-bearing years during that span!

Meanwhile, during their many years of waiting both Abraham and Sarah began to lose faith that they would ever have children; their hope diminished so much that Sarah gave him Hagar, her servant, to have a child for him.

It was at that point in their waiting for God’s best that they settled for second-best and in so-doing another group of people came of Abraham’s posterity that would actually become the enemies of the offspring God had originally promised.

Wow, just writing about this one decision and how it affected the entirety of all subsequent world-history is mind-boggling! This was of course the will of God, but it occurred during a lack of or a break in their faith during a time of waiting and hoping.

Yes, Abraham and Sarah lost hope, and therefore were unwilling to wait any longer. How many times have we all done the same? What we must learn from their example is to continue to hope in the Lord’s promises, to be willing to steadfastly wait on them, no matter the length of delay or how circumstances decry the fact that what we’re waiting and hoping for will occur.

How long will you wait for what you’ve asked God for, dear one? Even as I ask the question I know that every person reading this blog is waiting on God for something. And some of those desires are felt desperately. Can you still wait? Can you still hope? Can you “esperar”?

But back to Abraham: even though he and Sarah had compromised in having the child Ishmael through Hagar, God still fulfilled His promise and gave them Isaac. However, as already pointed out, losing their faith had long-term consequences and created short-term problems as well.

Looking to the scriptures one can see all the problems that occurred between Sarah and Hagar as well as between Ishmael and Isaac, and this is why the Lord’s will was to send Hagar and Ishmael away, because they were not part of the initial promise (Genesis 21).

As we consider Abraham and Sarah’s crisis of faith, let’s not be without mercy toward them. Almost every one who is reading this blog has experienced many crises of faith. Let us remember that Abraham was STRONG in faith and is considered the FATHER OF OUR FAITH. If he faltered in his waiting and hoping on the Lord, how much more could we?

So I ask again, in what way, dear one, are you compromising in your faith in terms of the thing(s) you are waiting and hoping on God for? How are you settling for second best when God has something greater for you in store if you’ll only continue to wait and to hope?

Moving on from Abraham, let us now consider Joseph whose early life began with amazing promises through two dreams he had that showed his family members bowing before him (Joseph’s story is found in Genesis 30-50). These dreams, along with the favor his father Jacob showed him, would lead him to believe that he would be the prince or patriarch of his family.

But this favorable outcome was much farther down the road than he would have liked as he was first sold into slavery by his own jealous brothers, then forced to toil for years in the Egyptian Potiphar’s house as his slave, only to be betrayed by Potiphar’s wife and subsequently put into prison for yet more years, punished for crimes he never committed.

How difficult in his circumstances must it have been to continue to hope and wait on the Lord for the fulfillment of the dreams he originally had? Those dreams showed him together with his family, yet during this over ten-year span of time he was decidedly separate from them. At some point, one could speculate he would rather just return to his family and tend sheep than to return caring for any position of leadership among them. He probably just wanted to be free.

Yet during those years he must have maintained his faith in God, so much so that God’s Spirit stayed with him as God gave him the ability to interpret dreams as well as continued to provide favor for Joseph in Potiphar’s house where he was placed in charge of everything (until his betrayal) as well as in the prison where the warden put him in charge of all matters there.

As the years in prison went on Joseph continued in hope as he beseeched the cup bearer for whom he interpreted a dream to remember him to Pharoah. And even though the cup bearer forgot him for more than a year, when Pharoah later had his own dreams that no one in his court could interpret, per the cup bearer’s suggestion, Pharoah called him up from out of the dungeon to see if Joseph could indeed interpret his dream.

And guess what happened next? Before Joseph’s interpretation and counsel to the Pharoah as to what he should do had barely parted his lips, Joseph was rewarded for all his waiting and hoping and in single moment rose from the dungeon to become governor over all of Egypt, second only to Pharoah himself.

As with Abraham, God fulfilled the promise that he had given to Joseph in his youthful dreams, the promise that he would indeed be bowed to by his own family, and this did indeed occur when they came into Egypt to escape the famine that had been foretold by the dreams Joseph interpreted for Pharoah.

One must wonder during all that time in prison just how much Joseph questioned the initial dreams God gave him about others bowing to him and surely there were moments when he attributed them to his own mind and ego. I bet there were times when he even laughed at those dreams as much as Sarah laughed when the angels of God told Abraham she would have a child at 90 years of age (Genesis 18:12).

It can be hard not to laugh at the promises of God when circumstances are such that they seem impossible. But as the angel asked in response to Sarah’s laugh, “Is anything too hard for the Lord?” (Genesis 18:14) I ask this question of all of us in our own difficult circumstances. Surely we all know the answer to this is no, but how many of us in the low points of life still hold onto the promises of God without wavering? How many of us are at the door of being called up out of the dungeon into something brand new?

Yet the times of waiting and hoping are those when our metal is tested, when what is at the core of our character is most brought to the surface. The points in our lives where things are hardest and seemingly unbearable we find what’s on the inside, be it good or bad, and it shines forth.

God is trying to grow us and to show us that when things are hard, He is still the same. He is still worth waiting on, worth hoping on. He is still more than enough.

God also revealed this pattern of proving mankind through times of waiting when He saved Israel out of Egypt and took them into the desert where there was no readily available food. There, He said to Moses, “…Behold, I will rain bread from heaven for you; and the people shall go out and gather a certain rate every day, that I may prove them, whether they will walk in my law, or no” (Exodus16:4).

Instead of immediately giving them the promised land which was teaming with food as it was called the “land of milk and honey,” the Hebrews would have to settle for manna each and every day out in the desert as part of a testing process to see if they could be content and obey God. If they could obey in such times of leanness, how much more could they during the times of blessing?

God wants to know that we love Him above everything else. The only way we can prove that to Him is to love Him above the thing(s) we are waiting and hoping on Him to perform, and to love Him even when those things we desire seem so far out of reach.

As the writer in Hebrews 11:32 points out, the time would fail him to tell of all the people who waited and hoped on God as recorded in scripture, but I would be remiss if I failed to mention David, who waited on God more than fifteen years after the time Samuel anointed him king until the time that he was actually crowned. Not to mention the fact that throughout those years many attempts were made on his life and he was living on the run in the wilderness (talk about Man vs. Wild or Survivorman!), biding his time. I bet he wasn’t feeling much like a king then. And yet, for all that time of waiting and hoping the promise was indeed fulfilled.

Just remember as you “esperar” (the Spanish word that started our article that means “to wait” or “to hope”) that God is the One that determines the times and seasons in our lives. We cannot force His hand; we can’t make Him do anything. If we try to take that control, we will only find negative consequences. Just ask Abraham about that. Certainly if he could have changed anything in all his life it would have been to wait on God to fulfill the promise of a child through his wife Sarah and not through Hagar.

All of us have had moments in our lives where we were waiting on God for something and we tried to take the reins and as a result messed things up royally. Let’s repent of those past errors in judgment and do our very best not to wrest control of our lives away from God anymore.

Let’s beseech Him to lead us and let us be willing followers of His leading. Let us also wholly commit to doing so no matter if our hopes and dreams are fulfilled or not, because in the end, this temporal present world will only remain as it is for a short while. We will either die before it changes or we will see the return of the Lord when everything will be made right. Either way, in eternity our earthly desires will seem small in comparison as the bliss of everlasting life overtakes the pain, tears and sorrow of this life.

So, let us continue to patiently wait and hope on the Lord in the meantime, knowing that He is faithful to fulfill His promises toward us and that waiting and hoping on Him is always worth it. Let us also remember that,

But without faith [it is] impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6).


Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD” (Psalm 27:14).