John Maxwell once said, “If we could kick the person responsible for most of our problems, we wouldn’t be able to sit down for weeks.” Life is an invitation to get out of our own way, so that God can have his way through us. The economy isn’t my problem and the devil isn’t my problem, I am my biggest problem. Too many of us are committing self-sabotage and blaming it on external circumstances. What you can’t see, you can’t guard against or prepare for. We need to ask God to gently reveal to us areas in our character that are blind spots and apply Gods grace to whatever he reveals to us. The more out of the way you are, the more God will have his say through you.
Too many of us “pray the problem” when we should be “prophesying the solution”. Jesus didn’t say ‘pray the problem’, he said, ‘pray your desire’ and believe that you have received it. Your prayer life may need a renovation. You may be guilty of praying too much, ‘Houston, we have a problem’, rather than, ‘Heaven has a solution’. It’s too easy to become pre-occupied with our problems than to pay attention to our words. If you become more word-conscious and less problem conscious, your problems will lose their power in your life. Magnify your words and you will minimise your problems. Words are powerful, they have creative power in them. The power of life and death is in the tongue. Jesus said, ‘If you speak to the mountain to be removed, it will be’. Too often we complain about the mountain, we spend inordinate time defining the mountain, we take pictures of the mountain to show our friends but Jesus said, ‘Speak to the mountain’. Nothing moves until you speak to it. Your future is in your mouth!
Numbers 13:30-31 ‘Caleb quieted the people before Moses and said, “Let us go up at once and occupy it, for we are well able to overcome it.” Then the men who had gone up with him said, “We are not able to go up against the people, for they are stronger than we are”.’
Fashion is one of my hobbies and I don’t mind the odd shop for some quality clothes. I’ve observed the higher quality the product, the higher price you must be willing to pay for it. You can’t have a BMW experience with a Ford Escort mentality.
Breakthrough in life and ministry operates the same way. The bigger the breakthrough you need, the bigger the price you must be willing to pay for it. Breakthroughs don’t come at bargain prices.
Problem is breakthrough is often disguised as hard work. The 10 spies who reported to Moses the state of the Promised Land looked at the giants, fortified cities and obstacles in the way and said, ‘Too Hard’. Most people want breakthrough, they’re just not willing to embrace the hard work required to get it. There’s a difference between a desire and a conviction. A desire is a surface level feeling that disappears when hard work is required but a conviction is a revelation in your heart that you will possess what you are believing for regardless of the hard work involved.
Breakthrough is inhibited by a bad report. 10 out of 12 spies brought back a bad report and it stopped nearly 3 million people from entering into their Promised Land. I’ve discovered, you can hear 100 words of encouragement but one negative report will be the thing you take away with you. I bad egg can mess it up for everyone else. We’ve got to guard our hearts and watch the report coming out of our mouths.
Breakthrough requires you to see through obstacles. 10 spies couldn’t see past the obstacle and they got intimidated by it to the point that they saw themselves as grasshoppers. When you see yourself as a grasshopper, you don’t see yourself as capable of overcoming great obstacles. When you can’t see through the obstacle you compare yourself to it and get intimidated by it. Get your eyes back onto Jesus, the author and perfecter of your faith. When you get a revelation of whom God is, He will give you a revelation of whom you are.
Joshua and Caleb modeled 4 key actions (V30) that we need to take note of as we head towards our own breakthrough:
- Unity – We are stronger together than we are alone
- Urgency – Seize the opportunity before you
- Faith – God was their source of strength
- Sacrifice – You can’t go up, if you don’t give up
God wants you to breakthrough but there’s a few hard questions you need to ask yourself. What hard work is in front of me that I am trying to avoid? What bad report have I brought to the table that I need to repent of? What obstacles in front of me intimidate me?