Have you ever received a promise from the Lord with instructions on how to obtain it? Maybe this promise was accompanied by dreams or maybe prophets singled you out to reiterate the promise. Confirmation after confirmation followed. You KNOW beyond a shadow of a doubt the promise is from God. You’ve even followed His instructions to the letter. You’ve prayed into it. You might have even fasted into it. So where is the manifestation? Why haven’t you received it yet?
We all know about delays- Joseph waited 13 years before his fortunes turned. He waited another 9 years until the promise was fulfilled. David spent years in the wilderness before he was crowned king. We also know that Abraham waited 25 years for his promised son and that maybe the promise was delayed because he tried to bring forth the fulfillment in his own strength by birthing Ishmael. We also know of the mistakes these made. For instance, Joseph shared his dreams out of time increasing the jealousy of his brothers.
So what if you’ve done everything you know to do? You’ve walked in faith for the promise. You’ve been careful not to disobey in anything. Then…..nothing happens, or circumstances actually get worse! What happened!?!
In Numbers 13:1-3, Moses was instructed by the Lord to send men on his behalf to reconnoiter the land. He was instructed to pick someone who was a leader from each tribe. Moses followed the Lord’s instruction to the letter. We all know what happened. When the spies returned, ten of them brought a negative report turning the whole nation against Moses, Joshua, and Caleb. The promise was eventually fulfilled, but not for another 40 years! Three men who followed the Lord’s instruction to the letter were knocked out of the promise in time due to the sin and failure of others.
Paul also, in obedience to the Lord, went to Macedonia. He was beaten and thrown in stocks in the innermost part of the prison for his obedience (Acts 16). Paul and Silas could have chosen to question whether they heard correctly from God, or not. They could have complained about their plight, but instead, they chose to sing and praise God. The Lord sent an earthquake, broke their bonds, and brought salvation to many!
Sometimes the promise isn’t just about us. Sometimes the Lord wants us to be involved in something so much bigger than we are that we can’t even begin to imagine! Abraham birthed a nation. Joseph saved his whole generation and the nation of Israel from starvation. Paul and Silas birthed a church that impacted a region. What ripple effect is God doing through YOU that will touch a multitude? Will you allow the Lord to be God and use you?