Praise God from whom ALL BLESSINGS flow!
PART 1 (Review)
What Does it Mean to Be Blessed?
EPHESIANS 1:3 – Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ,
- Long before He laid down earth’s foundations, He had us in mind, and had settled on us as the focus of His love, to be made whole and holy by His love. Long, long ago He decided to adopt us into His family through Jesus Christ.
- (What pleasure He took in planning this!) He wanted us to enter into the celebration of His lavish gift-giving by the hand of His beloved Son.
PSALMS 72:17 TPT – so that his name may be honored forever! May the fame of his name spring forth! May it shine on, like the sunshine! In him all will be blessed to bless others, and may all the people bless the One who blessed them.
ARE YOU EXPERIENCING BLESSINGS IN YOUR LIFE?
MOST PEOPLE WANT TO BE BLESSED!! FEW KNOW HOW TO TAP INTO THE WONDERFUL RESERVOIR OF BLESSINGS THAT ARE AVAILABLE TO US. OUR CREATOR GOD DELIGHTS TO BLESS HIS PEOPLE! HE LOVES FOR US TO MEET HIS CONDITIONS OF BLESSINGS, AND TO POUR OUT SHOWERS OF BLESSINGS UPON US.
THE LIFE GOD BLESSES
- 2 CHRONICLES 16:9a – The eyes of the Lord search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.
- GOD IS ON A SEARCH!!!
- HE IS NOT LOOKING FOR SUCH THINGS AS KNOWLEDGE OR PRECIOUS STONE!
- HE IS SEARCHING FOR A HEART THAT WILL ALLOW HIM TO SHOW THE WORLD HOW HE IS WELL ABLE TO HELP, STRENGTHEN, AND BLESS!!
- GOD DOESN’T LOOK AT THINGS THE WAY MEN OFTEN DO. HE LOOKS AT THE HEART! HE WANTS OUR HEARTS TO BE WHOLE-HEARTEDLY DEVOTED, PURE, AND FAITHFUL!!
- I SAMUEL 16:7 – But the Lord said to Samuel, “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.”
- 1 CHRONICLES 28:9 – And Solomon, my son, learn to know the God of your ancestors intimately. Worship and serve him with your whole heart and a willing mind. For the Lord sees every heart and knows every plan and thought. If you seek him, you will find him. But if you forsake him, he will reject you forever.
- LUKE 16:15 – Then he said to them, “You like to appear righteous in public, but God knows your hearts. What this world honor is detestable in the sight of God.
THE KIND OF HEART HE IS DRAWN TO, AND LOOKING FOR IS ONE THAT IS AFTER HIS OWN HEART
- 1 SAMUEL 13:14 – But now your kingdom must end, for the Lord has sought out a man after his own heart. The Lord has already appointed him to be the leader of his people, because you have not kept the Lord’s command.”
- A HEART OUT OF TUNE, OUT OF SYNC, WITH GOD’S HEART, WILL PRODUCE A LIFE OF SPIRITUAL BARRENNESS AND MISSED OPPORTUNITIES
- BUT WHEN OUR HEARTS ARE IN HARMONY, AND IN SUBMISSION TO HIS, WE WILL DISCOVER THE SECRET OF ABUNDANT BLESSINGS!!!
WHEN BLESSING BECOMES A CURSE!
- SOMETIMES GIFTS CAN BECOME AN UGLY, TRAGIC REALITY, IF NOT STEWARDED CAREFULLY. BLESSINGS SHOULD NOT MAKE US PROUD. THEY SHOULD BE RECEIVED WITH THANKSGIVING AND HUMILITY, REMEMBERED GRATEFULLY, AND UTILIZED IN SUCH A WAY AS TO GLORIFY THE LORD AND BE A BLESSING TO OTHERS.
- KING UZZIAH
- HIS REIGN HAS A GOOD BEGINNING.
- HE WAS A PROGRESSIVE, INDUSTRIOUS, WELL-RESPECTED KING.
- GREATLY BLESSED BY THE LORD
- WHAT WERE THE REASONS FOR KING UZZIAH’S SUCCESS?
- 2 CHRONICLES 26:15 – In Jerusalem he made machines of war invented by skillful workmen to be on the towers and the corners, for the purpose of shooting arrows and great stones. So his fame spread far, for he was marvelously helped until he was strong.
- 2 CHRONICLES 26:5 – Uzziah sought God during the days of Zechariah, who taught him to fear God. And as long as the king sought guidance from the Lord, God gave him success.
- GOD HELPED HIM!!!
- HE WAS ”GREATLY HELPED!!
- GOD’S BLESSING WAS THE SECRET OF KING UZZIAH’S WONDERFUL SUCCESS.
- AS LONG AS HE SOUGHT THE LORD, GOD PROSPERED HIM.
- 2 CHRONICLES 26:7, 15
- HEBREW WORD TRANSLATED AS “PROSPERED” MEANS TO “PUSH AHEAD”
- AS LONG AS HE WAS LOOKING TO THE LORD FOR GUIDANCE AND PROTECTION, HE WAS PUSHED FORWARD, SURROUNDED, HELPED, AND BLESSED BY ALMIGHTY GOD!
- AS UZZIAH WAS “SEEKING THE LORD” – IT LED TO GOD’S BLESSING
- HEBREWS 11:6 – And without faith, it is impossible to please Him, for the one who comes to God must believe that He exists, and that He proves to be One who rewards those who seek Him.
- UZZIAH’S DOWNFALL WAS HIS PRIDE (2 CHRONICLES 26:15-16)
- HIS HEART BECAME PROUD AND HE LOST GOD’S FAVOR.
- HE STARTED THINKING HE COULD DO ANYTHING HE WANTED.
- WHAT LED TO HIS PRIDE WAS THE BLESSING OF GOD!
- HE DIDN’T MAINTAIN HUMILITY
- HE LOST SIGHT OF WHAT HAD BROUGHT PROSPERITY, AND IT WENT TO HIS HEAD.
- HE STARTED THINKING IT WAS HIS TALENT AND HIS LEADERSHIP THAT HAD ACCOMPLISHED SO MUCH.
“BLESSINGS CAN EITHER HUMBLE US AND DRAW US CLOSER TO GOD, OR ALLOW US TO BECOME FULL OF PRIDE AND SELF-SUFFICIENCY.
HOW WE RESPOND TO THE LORD’S BLESSINGS BRINGS ALL THE DIFFERENCE!
- DEUTERONOMY 8:11-14, 17-18
- THERE IS DANGER!
- ANSWERS TO OUR PRAYERS CAN CAUSE OUR HEARTS TO BECOME PROUD AND STOP HUMBLY SEEING THE LORD! PRIDE HAS A DEVILISH QUALITY THAT KEEPS US FROM SENSING OUR NEED FOR GOD’S GRACE!
- THE SIN OF ARROGANT INDEPENDENCE INFECTED THE HEART OF KING UZZIAH. AS HE FOOLISHLY PURSUED SOMETHING GOD HAD FORBIDDEN HIM TO DO, AND HE WAS CONFRONTED HE WAS FULL OF RAGE
- (2 CHRONICLES 26:18)
PRIDE HAS A DEVILISH QUALITY THAT KEEPS US FROM SENSING OUR NEED FOR GOD’S GRACE!
PRAYER IS A KEY – CLINGING TO GOD’S PROMISES!
WE NEED TO LEARN TO WAIT UPON THE LORD IN FAITH. NO MATTER WHAT DIFFICULTIES WE FACE, OR HOW BAD THINGS SEEM TO BE GOING, WE MUST WAIT UPON THE LORD AND CLING TO PROMISE!
ISAIAH 49:14-16 – But Zion said, “The Lord has abandoned me, and the Lord has forgotten me.” “Can a woman forget her nursing child and have no compassion on the son of her womb? Even these may forget, but I will not forget you. Behold, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands; Your walls are continually before Me.
ISAIAH 40: 27-31 – Why do you say, Jacob, and you assert, Israel, “My way is hidden from the Lord, And the justice due me escapes the notice of my God”? 28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? 28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth does not become weary or tired. His understanding is unsearchable. He gives strength to the weary, and to the one who lacks might He increases power. 30 Though youths grow weary and tired, and vigorous young men stumble badly, Yet those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength; They will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.
THE SECRET IS TO HAVE A HEART THAT WAITS ON THE LORD!
VERSES ON WAITING ON THE LORD
- PSALM 25:3
- PSALM 27:14
- PSALM 40:1
- ISAIAH 49:8
- ISAIAH 30:18
WHAT TO DO IN RESPONSE TO BLESSINGS?
- PSALMS 116:12-14 – What shall I repay to the Lord for all His benefits to me? 13 I will lift up the cup of salvation, and call upon the name of the Lord. 14 I will pay my vows to the Lord; may it be in the presence of all His people!
- We have so much to be grateful for in this life. Each and every day. But the reality is that sometimes constant life demands, struggles, and worries give more room to defeat than to a heart of thanks. Or we forget, in the midst of busyness and pressures, just to pause and give thanks, for all that God has done, and continues to do in our lives.
- We have a choice, every day, to give him thanks!!
- ALWAYS BE GRATEFUL TO GOD!!!
PSALM 103:1-5 – “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me, bless his holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits, who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”
I THESSALONIANS 5:18 – “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”
EPHESIANS. 5:20 – “Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,”
2 CORINTHIANS 9:15 – “Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!”
BE GRATEFUL FOR ALL THE BLESSINGS!!!
Praise God from whom ALL BLESSINGS flow!
Jesus is the source of blessings and our greatest blessing!