The Key To Receiving God’s Blessings
If it seems like you’ve been waiting on God forever, maybe it’s because he’s waiting on you.
I am going to share with you the key to receiving God’s blessings. But, before I do, I have a few questions for you:
- Would you pay off someone’s credit cards if you knew they would just max them out again?
- Would you try to help reconcile feuding family members if they were unwilling to forgive each other?
- Would you give a million dollars to someone if you know he would keep every penny for himself?
- Would you promote an employee who rarely gives an honest day’s work?
I think we can universally agree that our answer to each of these is, and should be, “No.”
So, let’s ask ourselves this question:
“Is that what we’re asking God to do for us?”
Here’s what I mean…
The calendar has turned from December to January. A new year is here, a time for resolutions and declarations.
This year is going to be different. I am believing God for my breakthrough. I’ve been waiting too long. This is the year!
Many Christians—I have to believe this is true all over the world—are misguidedly awaiting a blessing. It’s no surprise, really, given some of the things we read and hear.
God wants to bless you and it’s time to collect on his promises! It’s time to activate your faith! You got to name it and claim it in the name of Jesus!
Sadly, many of us have bought in to the idea that we can somehow will God’s will. We get our expectors all expecting and shout “Hallelujah” at the top of our voice…
But, nothing happens. The blessings don’t come.
Oh, well. Maybe next year.
I used to do that… a lot. I used to say “The Bible says to wait upon the Lord. So, I’m waiting on the Lord. I’m just waiting on God!”
The Bible gives us scripture upon scripture upon scripture about God’s goodness and his desire to bless us. It’s easy to cherry pick verses about his promises without studying them carefully.
Here’s a good example:
Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4, NIV)
I’ve laid claim to that one many times. I read it, meditated on it, spoke it aloud.
And, I wondered why my life wasn’t changing, why the breakthrough wasn’t coming.
When God’s word doesn’t match up to our expectations, our first inclination is to question God, isn’t it? Rarely do we look at ourselves.
So, the Bible says that if we will “delight in the Lord,” he will give us the desires of our heart. In other words, if we are to expect his blessings we must first delight in him.
But, how do we do that?
I used to think it meant going to church, giving an offering, being a good person and reading the Bible now and then. I realize now that “delighting” in him is much more than that.
So much more.
The 18th Century theologian Matthew Henry described delighting in the Lord this way: “to know and love and live to God, to please him and to be pleased in him.”
Can you say that your first desire—I’m talking your top priority—is to know God, love him and live for him, to please him and be pleased in him?
I want to get there.
Are you wondering why your blessing hasn’t come? If it seems like you’ve been waiting on God forever, maybe it’s because he’s waiting on you.
Waiting on you to delight in him.
We want God to pay off our debts, but are we willing to change our spending habits?
We want God to heal our bodies, but are we willing to eat right and exercise?
We want God to bring us wealth, but are we good stewards of what he has already given us?
We want God to restore our relationships, but are we willing to give up our bitterness and resentment?
Yes, God wants to bestow blessings on us. But, he also wants us to be mindful of our money. He wants us to treat our bodies as a temple. He wants us to put others first. He wants us to forgive.
Should we really expect God’s blessings if we’re not willing to do those things?
On New Year’s Eve, Lori and I were blessed to be part of a midnight church service. Let me tell you, for people to be ringing in the new year at church, they must be serious about delighting in the Lord. We experienced genuine, God-centered worship. We heard an inspired message from Bishop Columba Niboro, who preached from the book of Isaiah:
Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! (Isaiah 43:18-19a)
Bishop Niboro told us to make a list of “former things” we want to leave behind, so that God can do a new thing in us.
I want to leave behind pride and self-reliance. I want to leave behind grudges. I want to leave behind my need to be a people pleaser above a God pleaser.
So then, there you have it, the key to receiving God’s blessings this year…
Delight in the Lord. Give him your heart and let him do a new thing in you.
When we delight in the Lord—truly delight in him—a funny thing happens: the desires of his heart and our hearts become one. We no longer desire God so that he can bless us; we desire him because that is what our heart wants.
And, when a child does that, what Father can resist pouring out his blessing?