When we make a choice that brings a change in our habits and our well-being, it’s important to take the time to prepare. The temptations come when we don’t know how to do what we have decided to do. The enemy tries to set us up for a step down from our place of obedience. The Spirit of God will lead us to set up for a step up.
Often defeat comes when preparation has not been put in place. In counting the cost of what we purpose to achieve, we must take into consideration what we have. When we decide to eat healthier, we need to shop, prepare meals and plan our week accordingly. When we prepare to fast from specific foods, we should not only make sure we don’t have these items around; we should make sure healthy alternatives are on hand. Even though there are some things for which we cannot prepare, wisdom is for us to do what we are able to do today, as led and enabled by the Lord.
When we prepare for a better job, a relationship or the next step up — we need to make sure nothing from our past, or present, can keep us bound. We walk away from the past, refuse to be stuck in today and are ready to step up into our future. Every step the Lord leads us to make is a step up from where we are to a better place, from glory to glory.
Philippians 3:13-14 “Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
In the midst of various afflictions, we may seem to be wearing out outwardly, but inwardly we are renewed day-by-day. This renewal is a continuous change for better. While some expected changes have not come to pass, and other changes have not been encouraging, this change helps us not to lose heart.
There are many things we attempt to change in our lives: vocation, habits, looks, even relationships. These can be pursued through the strength of our spiritual renewal. Daily, we are being renewed and changed into a new way of life. Even when we are not aware of it, our transformation into the image of Christ is continuously at work. When we feel we are losing heart, we turn our attention to the regeneration we can trust the Holy Spirit is bringing about. Paul was stoned, tortured, shipwrecked and much more but he called these afflictions light compared to the weight of God’s glory.
The increase of God’s glory is unending. Because of that, all things are subject to change at any time. This renewal ignites our passion and fuels our vision. It changes our perception of what is seen in the natural. It strengthens our faith. Instead of losing heart we gain more of the strength of the Lord. We walk in newness of life, from glory to glory!
2 Corinthians 4:16-17 “Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day-by-day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.”
The Lord honors our hunger for more of Him. He sees our drawing nigh unto Him. He knows when we are thirsty for more of Him; when we desire more time with Him; when our heart cries out for Him. We seek His presence and allow Him to move in our lives increasingly.
The presence of the Lord changes everything. Once we receive Him in our heart, He moves in every area, even those we think are hidden. With love, grace, mercy and patience…He starts healing, removing, restoring and occupying every space. When we detect that something else has taken over first place in our hearts, we must press in to the Lord so that He again is our number one priority. When we find ourselves worrying or overly concerned about things, we need to find rest in His presence. When our priorities do not line up with the Word, we seek Him first and find all things fall into their rightful position in our hearts.
As we seek Him with our whole heart, we reach greater heights. Joyfully, we receive Him as we appropriate all that He is in our lives. He sees us drawing nigh unto Him, so He draws nigh unto us. He moves in closer and closer, until there is nothing in between to hinder intimacy with Him. We are never content with just a visitation from the Lord; we desire His habitation, from glory to glory!
Luke 19:5-6 “And when Jesus came to the place, He looked up and saw him, and said to him, ‘Zacchaeus, make haste and come down, for today I must stay at your house.’ So he made haste and came down, and received Him joyfully.”
We can depend on the manifestation of what has been conceived in us by the Word of God, the incorruptible seed. Some plant, some water, but surely and only God gives the increase. He watches over His word to perform it.
When we are pregnant in the natural, we do not show right away. It is during that time that what we are carrying cannot be seen. It is the telling and no showing time. What is happening on the inside of us doesn’t correspond with what can be seen on the outside. We try to go forth as usual, but what was– can no longer be. What is unknown keeps drawing and pulling us from what is known. We walk by faith and not by sight. As we prepare our surroundings for what is coming, we realize that one day the growth of our seed will become evident. We are not yet sure of what is going to be birthed, but we know that nothing can stop it. As it grows, our confidence in its fulfillment grows as well.
We trust in the faithfulness of God bringing to pass what He has purposed. What we have been carrying is helping us move forward, regardless of the circumstances. We are driven from within by the Spirit of God. He is able, unstoppable, and remarkable. His purpose unfolds, from glory to glory!
Philippians 1:6 “… being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ…”
God keeps the best for last. No matter what our past held, we can expect that our latter days will be greater than our former days. Our futures are brighter than we can ask for or even imagine, filled with riches and unspeakable joy.
The enemy will make things appear to be so great at the beginning that we won’t see the destructive end he has in store for us. In God, things may not appear to be the best at the beginning, but we can rest assured the ending is glorious. When we start walking with the Lord, we go through a lot of surrendering, dying to self, letting go of the old and learning to walk free. We walk by faith and do not always see the breakthrough that is ahead of us. The enemy tempts people with immediate pleasure and short cuts with no cost; an easy way out; a quick fix; something appealing to the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life. The Lord doesn’t show us the best that is yet to come. We believe it and receive it by faith. He bestows so many blessings on us along the way and then takes us to the ultimate best: living in His glory for eternity.
In all we go through the Lord keeps us with His mighty power, grace and amazing love. He not only keeps us; He keeps the best for last so we can rest as we truly are going from glory to glory!
John 2:10 “And he said to him, ‘Every man at the beginning sets out the good wine, and when the guests have well drunk, then the inferior. You have kept the good wine until now!’ ”