Don’t Hold Back
Victory starts at the point where you give that impossible thing to God and let Him handle it.
And hello radio friends. How in the world are you? You doing Alright? Oh, I trust everything’s okay at your house. I’m feeling fine and happy in the Lord. Glad to be back with you. What a privilege it is to be able to speak the Word of God to my dear friends, day after day. I’m grateful.
You and I are looking at Colossians 1, we’re in verse nine. Paul said, I just don’t quit praying for you. Small thought here; don’t quit praying for your friends. Don’t get tired praying for your friends. Remember to pray specifically for them, instead of just saying, “God bless John”, pray specifically for them. Don’t quit praying for those whom God has laid upon your heart.
Alright, he says, “We don’t cease to pray for you and desire that you might be filled with the knowledge of His will’. We were talking the last time we got together about the divine spillover of blessing from a life that is full of the Holy Spirit of God, and the result of being filled with the Spirit of God is that He produces His own wonderful results in your life. “The fruit of the Spirit”, we read in Galatians 5:22, “the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and self-control”. The Spirit of God produces these God-like qualities in your life, infuses, if you will, some of the very nature of deity into your poor, old human nature and bears His wonderful fruit.
Filled, the spillover, when you’re jostled, when you’re under pressure, what shows up? Frustration and rage and, and all of the human components of a fallen human nature. Is that what shows up when you’re under pressure, or when you’re under pressure do you manifest the grace of God? It’s a good question isn’t it?
Romans 15:13 is a great promise and I often claim it for myself, “Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing that you may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost”. What a blessed, wonderful passage that is. “The God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing that you may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost”.
The spillover of joy, the spillover of peace, and the spillover of hope. How does it come? What makes this verse so important is the verb that’s there right in the middle of it. “The God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing”- now that word believe in the New Testament, as you know, has the idea commitment. Believe, as we use it ordinarily in our English language today, means I have a mental idea about something, I believe it may rain, I believe what he says, and so on. This is a mental process, but in the New Testament the word believe has in it the idea of commitment, of giving yourself to an idea, a concept, a person, or all of the above.
So, that this matter of believing, as you have it here in Romans 15:13, could very well be paraphrased now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in committing yourself absolutely to the Lord. Had you thought about it that way? You’re filled to the spillover point with joy and peace and hope, when you commit yourself, unreservedly to your Lord. Think about that. You see the point at which we fail is the point at which we, we draw back from complete commitment. Isn’t it true? The point is which we fail in spiritual things, as well as in daily life for that matter, is the point at which we draw back from complete commitment.
Asked a man one day who had been an area representative of a large corporation for some years, about his job. I said, obvious I was fishing a little, I said, “How long you been on this job”? “Oh, I’ve been in this area for 13 years”, he said. “Sales manager for this district, you know”, he said, “A couple times they’ve divided and taken away some of it, it got too big, they didn’t want me to make too much commission”, he said with a wry smile, but he said, “I stayed here”.
Well I said, “Now, that’s something. You’re a very fine manager and salesman, and all that, I would suppose that you would’ve gone right up the ladder and have been vice president”. But he said, “I could’ve”, but he said, “years ago they wanted to transfer me out to such and such a place”, he said, “and I didn’t want to go and I told them, ‘I’ll work for you here, but I don’t want to commit myself to being moved around the country’”, and he said, “that did it”. He said, “I haven’t been promoted since”.
Well, that figures. In corporate practice, you have to give yourself to the corporation to serve their goals. Isn’t it true? And it would seem that the bigger the corporation, the more that principle applies. It’s true in business, that when, when you draw back from a given set of goals, that’s the point at which you begin to deteriorate, but never is it more obviously true than in spiritual matters. Where someone has tasted the grace of God and has been wonderfully saved and now, for example, there comes the deep feeling that God is calling that individual into his own full-time, wonderful service, let us say, for example, calling to be a missionary. Well, now there’s a battle that ensues because it comes into conflict with the plans that this person has made. Shall I discard all the plans I’ve made and shall I change the course of my life and my preparation, so as to follow out this new impulse that I have? Not to say, called from God, shall I do that or shall I go on the way I wanted to?
Many years ago a man who’d been a very good friend to me and to my family, said to me one day with tears, he said, “Doc”, he said, “years ago God called me to be a missionary, but I said no, I won’t be a missionary, the girl that I’m in love with and want to marry doesn’t want to be a missionary”. I said, “I’ll be a good doctor and I’ll treat free, give free treatment to all of the pastors and the missionaries that come into my office and I’ll support missionaries, but I won’t go to the mission field”.
By now, the tears were coming down his cheeks and he said, “I’ve been true to that promise and I’ve given free treatment to all of the pastors and missionaries and Christian workers that came to my office”, but he said, “the girl that I married was untrue to me and made life a kind of a living hell for some years”, and the said, “worse than that”, he said, “every time I hear you fellas talk about the world and the need of people across the world, and the need for missionaries, every time I hear you talk about that”, he says, “I know that I ought to be out there somewhere on the mission field”. He said, “What can I do”?
Well, at that point he was a man of about 66. Highly successful in the medical practice, but thoroughly defeated in the goals of his life because he backed off from the will of God. What would you have told him? Well I said, “Doctor, you can’t go back and live it over again, but you can go on with God from here on. You can ask God for His forgiveness and cleansing, and you can give yourself completely to Him for the years that lie ahead of you, and you can be a blessing to many people, even though you’ve missed God’s first call for your life”. That’s all you can say isn’t it? Calvary covers it all, even the mistakes that we make, but oh it’s a sad business when you back off from the will of God.
Am I talking to anybody today that’s facing that kind of a situation, and down in your heart you know what God is asking you to do. Maybe He’s calling you into the mission field, maybe He’s calling you to be a pastor or a Christian educator or something else, or maybe it has to do with something in your life, some practice, some relationship, something that is against the will of God and every time you pray that comes up before you, doesn’t it? Well, don’t back off from it. Don’t say, “Well God, I can’t handle this. I can’t do anything about it”. Instead, give the impossibility to Him, with God all things are possible.
I said many years ago now on this broadcast, I suppose it would be now 12 or 15 years since this happened, I said, “You know, if you’re an alcoholic the first thing you have to do is to confess to God that you can’t handle this thing, that you are a slave, and then ask Him for Jesus’ sake to deliver you, and trust Him to do it”. Words such as that I spoke and I got a letter back from someone, I think was out in the Pittsburgh area said, When I first heard you say that., I was offended and angry and then I thought, well why don’t I try it? And so I confessed to God that I was indeed a slave to alcohol. I couldn’t quit and I needed deliverance and I ask Him for Jesus’ sake to deliver me”. He went on to say in his letter, he said, “I didn’t have anything dramatic happen right then”, but he said, “things began to happen and today I’m free and it’s a whole new life. Thank God”.
Well my friend, this is how God works. Of course you can’t handle whatever it is that you’re facing. I don’t know what your problem is, how can I know? But God knows, doesn’t He? Oh yes, He does. “Thou has beset me behind and before and laid thine hand upon me, there is not a word on my tongue but oh Lord, Thou knowest it altogether, Thou are equated with all my thoughts”, this is what the psalmist said in the 139th Psalm.
God knows, and because He knows He also is longing to help you if you let Him. Oh, today bring the impossibility to God, will you? Bring the heart that can’t forgive. Bring the life that is bound by some habitual practice. Maybe you’re into drugs or alcohol or whatever it may be. Bring the mind that refuses to think the right thoughts, bring the attitudes that need rearranging, bring the job situation that seems so impossible, bring it to Him, bring the matter of your children who may, as they come in through adolescence be rebellious and, and impossible in their reactions. It seems like you cannot as mother or father do anything that pleases them, everything seems to be wrong, and with all the rebellious and disobedient and they’re breaking your heart. Hey, bring that to God and give it to Him by faith.
See, the point at which you surrender instead of backing away, is the point at which victory begins. Oh, would you do that today beloved? It works in every area of life.
Failure starts at the point when you back off from the will of God. Victory starts at the point where you give that impossible thing to God and let Him handle it, and He will, thank God. Oh yes He will! “For with God nothing shall be impossible and it is God”, Philippians 2:13, “it is God that worketh in you, both to will and to do”. The verb to will means He takes care the motivation, and the verb to do means that He takes care of the performance of His will as well. Turn it over to Him, turn it over to Him. He’ll take care of it.
Father today, may we be found giving over to Thee, those areas where ordinarily we would back away, in Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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