Intro: We know that hard days are coming for this nation and many people. Increasingly more workers are being laid off work, over 1.9 million this year alone. They expect this trend to continue, a process they say will not stop just because the recession ends. American Greeting cards wrote a card displaying the national mood saying: Have a Great Depression and Sub-prime New Year. Sub-prime loans, or risky home loans to those with poor credit is what caused the housing crisis. Housing sales are at their slowest rate since they started tracking housing sales back in the 1960’s and they are expecting it to still get worse.
Parents are starting to take children out of daycare and more are being left home alone without an adult and other families are giving up their pets to cut costs. Shoplifting has risen ever month this past year. Businesses are beginning to stop matching funds for retirement accounts. I believe 2009 will see the stock market fall to 6000. There will be more banking losses. Bank of America is planning to layoff some 35000 people. Before the economic crisis is over, an energy crisis will come. I could say much more but you get the point of the situation for America in the natural.
Isa 43:19 “Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.” This is a time of great change and new direction. God is changing everything, he is making new wine skins to hold the new wine that is about to be poured out. It is a new day, a new season, requiring new ways of thinking and doing things, new ways of worship and prayer. The things of the past will no longer work or be effective, but will bring frustration and failure. We have to make the shift and change and become open and pliable as a supple new wineskin to be able to receive the new wine and not burst.
We need to see and hear what God is saying today. Without current and relevant revelations from the Lord we will not know what to do and face destruction. There were several visions of snow for this winter, before it began falling. A part of these dreams was that as the old snow was being cleared off, new snow was falling. This speaks of two things. First in the natural, it means a lot of snow will fall, speaking of a hard winter, which has already begun. But it also means that before the winter is over, the cost of natural gas & heating oil will most likely go up. It is from such revelation that we can gain insight and understanding of how to invest. But that is but one piece of the puzzle. God is no longer giving all the information to one person, as Moses, but is wanting to bring His body to the place of knowing that they need and are dependent upon one another. God wants to work in his body corporately.
Example. A man has a vision of two men on their knees praying for God to give to them their daily bread. As they continue pleading with the Lord, a hand reaches down out of heaven and gives two loaves of bread to one of them. The Lord then says, “Did I not answer both of their prayers.” What is He speaking to us?
That God wants us to start thinking differently and that in the days ahead it will not be just what I receive is mine for my blessing and benefit, but for the benefit and needs of the body of Christ. Those that God blesses in this season, He is going to be watching what they do with it. Will they use the blessing for themselves, or to share with others in need? Remember what our apostle said about tithes, offerings and alms. God blesses His people with an abundance so that it will be spread out and touch others and spread the gospel.
Mat 25:34-43 “Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: 35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in: 36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. 37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? 40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. 41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: 42 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: 43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.”Remember, we are the body of Christ and therefore a part of Him. So what we do for those who are His, we are doing unto Him and will be rewarded according. “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.”
It is those God can trust with the resources He gives them in the coming days, that He will then give more too, not those who will use it for their own gain and purposes only, but those who will be like Joseph, and use what God has given them to save others. God is saying, if I give you two loaves of bread and you know a brother without, then you have his provision in your hand and you are to give it to your brother and then both of you will have bread. That is the way the church was in the early days.
Act 2:44-46 “And all that believed were together, and had all things common; 45 And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need. 46 And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart” This was God’s idea, not man’s. Men will not do such things on their own, but only by the Spirit of God and love of God in their hearts.
Second, in the spiritual, snow speaks of new revelation falling from heaven and coming to the earth. But it is important to note that the old snow was first being cleared off. That speaks of clearing out, removing the revelations of the past season that we have believed and lived by and being prepared to receive the new revelation that we need for today and the days ahead. Yesterday’s revelation, what Jesus was saying to His people yesterday, is not sufficient for our need today.
So first, today is a day to pause and reflect upon the past, of what God has said to us and what He has done in our lives and then ask for a new understanding and perspective of where He wants to take us. We have to pause long enough to hear His voice speaking to us and to know His direction and plans for us as His people. He said, “Be still and know that I am God.” Psa.46:10
We must then remember what our Apostle recently confirmed and reminded us of. Isa 55:8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.” We need His ways and thoughts to become part of our reflections to help focus our direction. We have to look into the spiritual mirror of our lives and see how much of our lives are spent reacting to this world and its systems. How much time do we spend worrying about the events and conditions of our world around us and what is happening in America and other countries. God is turning this world upside down as they see it, to change it and make a new foundation for his people. [So in reality, God is working to turn the world right side up because it has been upside down from the perspective of His kingdom.]
We are to be in this world, as ambassadors, but not of this world. Jesus told us to “render unto Caesar the things that belong to Caesar,” the things that belong to the systems of this world and Caesar, but to also render unto God the things that belong to God, which begins with our very lives. Jesus did not concern himself with the politics of the day. He lived within the systems of the world in his day, but operated beyond those systems, in the spiritual realm. He was in them but not of them. That is the key. We have to begin by hearing what the Lord is saying to us today, we must know what He is doing today and line up with those things and become a part of them so we can take the proper steps to receive the blessing and provision of God in this next season.
So where are we going and what are we doing as the body of Christ? What are God’s purposes for us and how will they be accomplished? Here I think we have to go back to something first spoken by God years ago. It is a revelation of the big picture and the purpose of the church. We have to then find our place and how we can be a part of what God is doing.
The Seven Mountains of society. Lord Cunningham said the Lord spoke this to him in August 1975. “This is the way to reach American and the nations. In every city in the world an unseen battle rages for dominion over God’s creation and the souls of people. This battle is fought on 7 strategic fronts that loom like mountains over the culture to shape and influence its destiny. Over the years the church slowly retreated from its place of influence on these mountains, leaving a void now filled with darkness. When we lose our influence, we lose the culture. And if we lose the culture, we fail to advance the kingdom of God. And now a generation stands in desperate need. It’s time to fight for them and take back these mountains of influence. The mountain of government, where evil is either restrained or indorsed. The mountain of education, where truths or lies about God and his creation are taught. The mountain of media, where information is interpreted through the lens of good or evil. The mountain of arts and entertainment, where values and virtue are celebrated or distorted. The mountain of religion, where people worship God in spirit and truth or settle for religious ritual. The mountain of family, where either the blessing or curse is passed on to successive generations. And the one mountain they all depend upon.
The mountain that funds all the other mountains, the mountain of business. Where people build for the glory of God or the glory of man. Where resources are consecrated for the kingdom of God or captured for the powers of darkness. Those who lead this mountain, control what influences our culture. The last 50 years we have seen the most rapid moral decline in history. The culture we inherited from our forefathers is disintegrating before our eyes. What kind of world are we living for our children and grandchildren? As long as the business mountain is held by enemies of the gospel, funding for the other mountains will always be constrained and any efforts to advance the kingdom of God will be hindered. Imagine, God’s people reclaiming their cities and government, in the arts and entertainment, in the media and education, in the family, in religious influence, but only limited by their imagination and not by lack of finances.
It’s possible, but first we must take back the mountain of business. God’s move to take this mountain back has already begun. Thousands and thousands of business leaders in every major city across the nation are filling arenas to learn from business leaders and hear the gospel of Christ. 90% of the people working in the marketplace believe in God. 78% believe spirituality and business mix. 70% say that because of their faith they find meaning and purpose in life. There are over 56 million Bible believing Christians working in the marketplace. A vast army of God waiting to be truly engaged in the battle. Yet this strategic army and battlefront has been largely ignored by the church. More than 90% of church members feel they are not being equipped or trained by the church to apply Biblical faith in their day to day life.”
Much of culture is defined by what happens in business. It is only by economic power than the church can have influence in the culture we live in. In the past the church took their people out of serving God in the marketplace and government and arts and entertainment and almost every way in which we have been given by which to influence our culture as salt and light.
God never intended for those who follow Him to just become religious, but to be a people of relationship with Him and with one another. And that we would then be faithful stewards of all He gives us and be productive in our work and to carry His spirit and influence to those around us and to the nations. We do not live the life of what God intended for us to be and have the experience of being the church of the living God and body of Christ by a two hours of service on Sunday and a home cell meeting during the week. Are we in our daily life of thinking and meditation, communing with the Father and being transformed by His active presence in our lives.
Oh how I love our times of corporate worship because the Lord has so blessed us to have Pastora Korey as our worship leader and it is such a joy to be together and worship, but we have to also have a personal vision and revelation for ourselves, apart from our corporate meetings and worship. Are we living our lives thinking we are okay because we have such wonderful times of worship and preaching? Are or these things bringing us to the place where the Holy Spirit is working in our lives on a daily basis to bring us into God’s plans and purpose for our lives?
Are we living our lives with the center point being Christ and His Kingdom according to Matt.6:10-11 and Matt.6:33. Mat 6:10-11 “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 11 Give us this day our daily bread.” Mat 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” God desires that His kingdom and righteousness encompass the totality of our lives and influence everything that we do and all that we are. Such that our lives are a reflection of His life. To do that we have to be filled with His love for others to such a decree that we will forgive all hurts and wrongs as we desire to be forgiven. That we love those who have not acted towards us with love, whether it be those of our own family relations, those at work, or other church members. Are we loving them, praying for those who have hurt us or are we judging them and justifying ourselves. Is the Lord the Lord of our lives in reality and our partner in life and one we look to for help in all decisions and all that we do so that it will bring honor and glory to Him.
Are we seeing our brother or sister as a part of Christ, even if they offended us in the past or done us some wrong, at least as we perceive of think. Are we growing in the grace of Christ and becoming bigger than petty complaints or do we allow little nothings to affect our relationships and fellowship with others of the body of Christ. Have you realized that most of what we complain about; and I have to include myself and the complaints I have made in the past, as nothing and so completely insignificant before the greater meaning and significance of the will of God for us and the kingdom of God we are called to expand and represent as ambassadors of Christ?
In Conclusion: Hebrews 12:26-29 "'Yet once more I shake not only the earth, but also heaven.' Now this, 'Yet once more,' indicates the removal of those things that are made, that the things which cannot be shaken may remain. But please notice God’s purpose for the shaking that is going on in this world. 28-19 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear. For our God is a consuming fire." And He has begun to judge His body the church and our Apostle has released over this body the spirit of judgment and burning that we can be purified and become a holy bride for our Lord Jesus. God wants a people to whom He can give the kingdom. The question is; will we be such a people.
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