Wednesday, July 13, 2011

God's Favor

"What if the Lord had not been on our side?" Let all Israel repeat.  What if the Lord had not been on our side..."  Psalm 124

That is a question we should all ask at times.  What would have happened if God hadn't stepped in?  Who would we be if God hadn't intervened in our lives?  In this Psalm, David takes the time to think about what would would have happened to the Israelites if God hadn't given them favor.   Here's a summary of what David said would have happened:
  • "Our enemies would have conquered us"
  • "The pressure would have overwhelmed us"
That reality actually happened to the Israelites.  God told them to go into the promised land and conquer the land, but the people sinned by not having faith to believe God would give them the strength to conquer these "giant" people.  So God told them they would no longer be able to occupy that land and that He would give it to their children instead. 

In Numbers 14:39-45, after the people heard that news, they felt "sorry" for what they had done and decided to try to go into the land anyways.  But Moses said, "Why are you now disobeying the Lord's orders.... It won't work.  Do not go up into the land now.  You will only be crushed by your enemies because the Lord is not with you."  Long story short: they went anyways and got crushed.

What if the Lord in not on our side? 
Who would we be if God hadn't intervened in our lives? 
  • I would have never gotten out of a life of drugs and unfulfilling addictions.
  • I would have probably not married a godly women and would be divorced by now.
  • I would be living a selfish life in pursuit of worldly wealth, a life with no impact.
As I think of the process of starting a church, if God hadn't been on our side...
  • Our fund-raising attempt would have failed
  • Our attempts to build a launch team would have failed
  • Our attempts to partner with our city would have failed
  • Our marketing and church growth strategies would have failed
  • Our efforts in reaching people far from God would have been empty
Wow, how we need God's favor.  If God is not on our side, all this is meaningless.   If the good things we do are not initiated and guided by His Hands, they will be empty deeds.  This principle is why our core value #11 as a church is this:

"We depend on the favor of God – We believe God-sized movements happen when we act in audacious faith in the power of the Holy Spirit."

Without God on our side, we will fail.
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