This is a series of posts…
- “Nothing will be impossible for you” – Jesus Christ (October 2011)
- Whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you HAVE received it (October 2011)
- How does faith work? (Nov 2006)
- Not by might nor by power but by my Spirit (Zech 4:6)
- The Kingdom of God grows – its a process
- In The parable of the sower we have to persist until we bear fruit
- In The parable of the lamp on a stand we will get what we ASK for
Ask anyone who knows me over the past few decades, they will tell you I have had an intense experience of seeking God. Ask anyone who knows me now, they will say the intensity has gone and its within me but on the outside I am more at peace and travelling well now. I have pretty much found my groove and what I have been looking for.
How did I do it? How can you do it? Read on…
Without a shadow of doubt I came to the conclusion long ago that Jesus Christ is the Christ that was promised by the old testament. But. My inner longing and yearning continued. And continued.
I’ve travelled through 20+ countries. I’ve talked and discussed spiritual things with everyone in each of those countries. No holds barred, no topic off limits, nothing too sensitive. I’m a determined man, I left no stone unturned. My desire for God drove me and drove me.
But why did it drive me so much? Read on… 🙂
Then in 2000 God spoke through a prophetess that He had PUT a great spiritual hunger within me and it would only be satisfied when I seek Him with all my heart and soul. Armed with this potential solution, and longing for that satisfaction and release and peace, I pressed myself even harder and harder to come to a place of seeking Him with all of my heart and soul.
God was referring to this verse…
They entered into a covenant to seek the LORD, the God of their fathers, with all their heart and soul. – 2 Ch 15:12
So I “pressed in”. (Ugh.) No, it didn’t work. (And how deeply I have come to dislike that phrase “press in”. If at all possible, please never say those words to me again. It’s simply terrible advice to anyone.)
When I found something in the bible that seemed to bring the person closer to God, I did it.
I literally made incense from the right ingredients. I made dinner and placed an extra seat. I anointed my right toe and ear (Lev 8:23, Ex 29:20). I had worship music going day, night and in my car. I attended church as much as I could. I got the cd. Got the dvd. Bought their music. I wrote His name on my arm (Is 44:5) and I have that picture (left) to prove it! 🙂
But, sigh, all that pressing in (ugh) and it didn’t work.
So… knowing that the prophetess had said God says that the key was to seek Him with all my heart and mind, I doubled my efforts more.
I bought books listing every prayer in the bible, Every Name Of God, every teaching of Jesus, every name of the Holy Spirit, praying the 120 names of God, every prophecy about the Christ in the OT, I looked into Every Promise In The Bible hoping to get some of them… and… and I prayed and prayed and prayed.
If I say to you that I am a determined man, you will now probably believe it, right? hehehe.
And? And nup. I surely gained favor and mercy from God, but peace-stillness-deliverance was far off. I am sure that the people at church thought I had lost it. “Poor delusional guy” they probably muttered as they walked past the guy with the name of God written on His arm.
I didn’t care. I still don’t. I wanted to find God. For real.
But what I didn’t know was the meaning of this scripture…
‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty. – Zech 4:6
All that pressing in (ugh!) and for what? The answer lay with Him the whole time. Look:
I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. – Ez 36:25-27
So there’s your answer. He does it. And how do you get it? The answer to that lies just 10 verses later. Are you ready? It’s not complicated. Here it is…
Thus says the Lord God: For this also I will let the house of Israel inquire of Me to do it for them – Ez 36:37
Tah-dah!!!!! We inquire of Him, He does it. What does He do? He increases us, He causes us to live. 🙂
“Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit“. He does it. You ask Him to do it. If you are “Jewish”, you ask Him to do it and if you are “Christian/Messianic” then you believe He did it on the cross already and it’s yours already.
I quoted Ez 36:25-27 but in fact I found the same promise again and again in so many locations. Here are another 5 instances – just to get you started:
And the Lord your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants, to love the Lord your God with all your [mind and] heart and with all your being, that you may live. – Deut 30:6
We ask/believe (Ez 36:37). He does it. We love Him and really live.
And I will give them a heart to know (recognize, understand, and be acquainted with) Me, that I am the Lord; and they will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with their whole heart. – Jer 24:7
We ask/believe (Ez 36:37). He does it. We return to Him and be His people.
But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel: After those days, says the Lord, I will put My law within them, and on their hearts will I write it; and I will be their God, and they will be My people. – Jer 31:33
We ask/believe (Ez 36:37). He puts His law in us and writes it on our heart. We become His people, He becomes our God. It’s VERY personal.
And they will be My people, and I will be their God. And I will give them one heart and one way, that they may [reverently] fear Me forever for the good of themselves and of their children after them.And I will make an everlasting covenant with them:
I will not turn away from following them to do them good, and I will put My [reverential] fear in their hearts, so that they will not depart from Me. – Jer 32:38-40
We ask/believe (Ez 36:37). He gives us (Jews and non-Jews) one way and one heart. He causes us to reverently fear Him for our own good. He promises to not stop doing good to us. He will cause us not to depart from Him.
And I shall put My Spirit in you and you shall live, and I shall place you in your own land. Then you shall know, understand, and realize that I the Lord have spoken it and performed it, says the Lord. – Ez 37:14
We ask/believe (Ez 36:37). He puts His Holy Spirit within us, He places us in our own “place” (for Jewish people this is Israel of course). Because He has done this for us, we know it is He who has done it (no one else could have) and we KNOW and UNDERSTAND that it is He.
One more thing. You saw I quoted Ezekiel chapters 36 and 37. (Ez 36:37, Ez 37:14, Ez 36:25-27) and you saw that I said these promises are for Israel and for non-Jewish people. How do I justify this? Well, lets look again at the same chapter of Ezekiel 37!
Son of man, take a stick and write on it, For Judah and the children of Israel his companions; then take another stick and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and all the house of Israel his companions;and join them together into one stick that they may become one in your hand.
And when your people say to you, Will you not show us what you mean by these?Say to them, Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph–which is in the hand of Ephraim–and the tribes of Israel his associates, and will join with it the stick of Judah and make them one stick, and they shall be one in My hand. – Ez 37:16-19
So it is in this way that I can confidently say that the promises apply to both houses – to modern day Israel and to non-Jewish people.
If I can leave you with one thing, I would try and impress on you the need to ASK and to BELIEVE
Thus says the Lord God: For this also I will let the house of Israel inquire of Me to do it for them; I will increase their men like a flock. – Ez 36:37
May God bless you in your search, as He blessed me.
Please share this post with someone who is searching, or someone who needs to see their life and their potential in a whole new light – as an overcoming victory through Jesus Christ. May God bless you – and I look forward to reading your comments and replying to them!