We are an excited bunch around here today. This month is the official 1 year anniversary of New Life Design. We can’t believe that it has been a whole year since we “set up shop” and “hung out our shingle” as we say. We are indeed grateful for all that Father has done over the past year. The step of faith was so worth it!!
As I reflect back on this faith journey so far, I am reminded of the verses in Hebrews 11 that I spent much time pouring over before we announced the plans for NLD. This chapter journals the experiences of many saints who lived by faith and brought honor to the kingdom of God. One part in particular beckons my attention day after day and that is verses 13-16. Let me share them with you….
“All these died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. For those who say such things make it clear that they are seeking a country of their own. And indeed if they had been thinking of that country from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country, that is a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; for He has prepared a city for them.”
These people were controlled and sustained by their faith. Even though they had not seen with their own eyes the fulfillment of the promise before they died, they kept their focus on God who sustained and controlled them. Scripture is very quick to say that they did not focus on what they had left behind but on what was ahead of them and the call of God “to go”. I am intrigued by the part of verse 15 that says that if they had been thinking of what they left behind they would have had opportunity to return. But to return would have been disobedience. In the Amplified Bible verse 15 says, “…they would have found constant opportunity to return to it.”
I am finding that with this faith jouney our key lies in where we set our minds! Where is our daily focus? What is our attitude each day? Regardless of whether you are in the midst of a huge faith step, battling with your own fleshly ways, or just desiring to live a victorious Christian life – the key is focusing our minds. Another verse in the next chapter of Hebrews helps us with this. Chapter 12:1b-2a says, “…let us also lay aside every encumbrance, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith…” Our victory is not found in striving, laboring, toiling, and working. No! It is found in fixing our eyes on Jesus! Period….end of sentence. Just as you don’t work, labor or strive to put away all those fleshly behaviors, you don’t work, labor or strive to get more faith either. The answer is found in placing our focus on our Father and who He is and who we are in Him. Victory over the flesh will come and you will see greater faith than you could have imagined bubbling up inside of you as you fix your focus – set your mind on Father. We received our salvation by faith as we looked to Jesus so what makes us think we will receive victory in these other areas any other way?
For these characters in Hebrews 11, I find upon deeper study that their faith was promted, aroused and actuated. It was not created, grown or develped. Some of you may be familiar with 2 Peter 1:3 that says, “seeing that His divine power has granted to us (meaning He has already given it to us) everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.” He has already given us everything we need….all the faith, all the victory over sin, all the patience etc… that we need for daily living. You have what you need within your spirit because you have Christ’s life in your spirit. If we take responsibility for setting our mind, focusing our attention on Him each day, allowing Him to live His life out through us then we will never lack anything that we need for each day.
So, we invite you to celebrate with us this huge mileston that Father has brought about and continue to set your mind, focus and attention on Him each day. You will begin to see your faith aroused, promted and actuated! You will indeed find victory over the flesh! Experiencing Christ’s life as your source is an awesome adventure, and as we have found today, it leads you to milestones that you never thought possible!!