Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Only God has all the answers

This post is to try to be a helpful reply to the comments written regarding the last post on "Riches".

First off, as the title proclaims, ONLY God has all the answers. We boggle our minds trying to figure everything out for ourselves, but the truth is, we often waste a lot of time, because only God knows everything, and some day when we are in Heaven and it all becomes clear, we will go "hmmm, that makes perfect sense now God, I totally understand what you were doing and trying to accomplish in my life. Seems odd that I could have been so clueless back then". But truth is, some 'truths' won't be revealed to us until the time is right, so we essentially are 'clueless' until that time. I do know though, that God is in control and even when bad things happen (1. its because sin was let into our world through Adam and Eve's disobedience. and 2. because since sin IS in our world, God sometimes uses these trials to make us stronger.) He will never give us something we can't handle. He is always looking out for us. There are SO many directions to go in this "answer" to try to help you and quite honestly my mind is swirling with avenues to take. But if I wrote on each one right now, I'd be here till bedtime (and its morning now). So to hopefully, just give some food for thought and maybe help get in the right direction I am only going to hit on a couple of points, but I'm sure I can use these other 'avenues' for future posts (so stay tuned).

1. We've hit this briefly already. God is in control. YOU can't always figure everything out and that may just be something you have to learn to take in stride. God does have a plan though and like Ashley added in her comment, we are His stewards. He will only give us what we are capable of handling. Why do you think so many lottery winners wind up in dire straights after winning millions? They weren't ready for it. God knew that, and that's why He hadn't already put resources in their hands to help them become millionaires through Him. He knew they couldn't handle it. They weren't good stewards (yet). {I think everyone has an ability to grow in all areas of our walk with God, and therefore I think everyone has the ability to someday be a good steward of His kingdom if they aren't already}. By building up our stewardship little by little, we are proving faithful in our actions and therefore being blessed with more. Make sure you are being faithful with what God has ALREADY given you before asking for more.

2. When dealing with finances, tithing is the cornerstone. We can't expect to be blessed in our finances if our foundation is cracked. The Bible is very clear "bring all your tithes into the storehouse". The Bible is also very clear that a tithe is 10%. The Bible is clear on this, but some people don't want it to be, so they modify it to fit their plan instead, BUT we are to tithe off our gross, not our net income. Somebody once said if you want to tithe off your net income, then you better plan on getting a net blessing. Wouldn't you rather have a full blessing? To me tithing is black and white and I have lots of posts I can share on this, but two things are most important in tithing. 1. You HAVE to do it with a loving, grateful, honest heart. You CAN'T tithe expecting that return (that is indeed promised in the Bible) you can't put the money in the bucket and be thinking about the "windows of heaven opening and showering you with blessings that can't even fit in your barn/bank account". You HAVE to give your tithe JUST BECAUSE YOU LOVE GOD. Not for anything He can do for you. You don't want a friend who only hangs around you because you give them stuff and buy them lunch, right? Well, God doesn't want a son/daughter to hang around just for blessings either, He wants us to want to be with Him, JUST because we LOVE Him. Remember, that's why we were created. For fellowship with Him. He wants communion with us. He could have created robots just to worship Him. He created us with minds of our own so that we would CHOOSE Him. Unfortunately, Adam and Eve made a poor choice long ago, so that perfect world He created for all of us, is now tainted with sin, and yes, Satan does have some power in this world now (because we gave it to him). Which will bring us to my next point, but before I get there I've got to give you the second requirement of tithing... that is that you are obedient in it. You not only do it with the right heart, but you do it the way God told you to do it-10% of all your income (that's gross). Just write that tithe check immediately after you record your income check in your checkbook. That's what I do.
So there is no sense in praying or fasting for finances if we haven't obeyed God in the first place with our tithe. Honestly, when people come to my husband and I for financial guidance, the first thing he says to them is show me your tithes and show me your income. If you aren't doing that right, we are wasting each other's time, because there is nothing "I" can do to help you if you aren't first following God's Word in your finances. You have to get that right between you and God first.

3.The third point comes from that same book I'm reading (God is so good in His timing isn't He?) Its The Three Heavens by Mark Gorman. To summarize some, this book talks about 3 Heavens. Earth and us being in the first heaven. The physical one. The 3rd Heaven is where God is and where you will go when you die-its spiritual. The 2nd heaven is between the 1st and 3rd, it is also spiritual. That is where Satan is. Real briefly, Mark gave an example about prayer and why sometimes its seems like we are praying and not getting results (make sure your foundation is right first though!). He drew it out like this, you pray in the 1st heaven, and your prayer goes to the 3rd heaven. God always HEARS our prayers (the Bible tells us this so I know its true). Its like you reached your arm up to the 3rd Heaven, God put the answer to your prayer in your hand, and now all you have to do is bring your arm and hand back to the 1st heaven to receive your answer. However, satan is in the middle there and he doesn't want you to get your prayer answered. He CANNOT take your answer to prayer out of your hand of faith. He doesn't have the power or authority to do so. But since he can't do that he tries the next best thing, he delays it. He tries all sorts of things to slow down you receiving your answer. That's why sometimes it seems like we pray for something and we don't get our reply. God replied but satan stalled it. Now you say but God is bigger than satan, just kick him out and give me my answer (in due time!) but until then, satan is messing up stuff, just like how he messed with Adam and Eve, and because of this we've got to deal with it (for now), but God isn't letting satan push you beyond your limits, just like He didn't let him push Job beyond his limits. Keep your faith. Keep your foundation rock solid, and continue on in your walk, glorifying God all the way (nothing makes satan madder than God being glorified, so keep it up!)

4.Remember Job. Sometimes it looks like we are doing everything according to God's plan. We are obedient, our heart is right, and yet we still suffer hardships (yes, we know we will grow from them, but "come on God, enough already ", right?) Like I said earlier, in the end this will all be clear, but sometimes, there is no explanation we here on Earth can give and the explanations we do give might be wrong (Job's friends started saying "come on Job, WHAT have you done wrong, you need to repent" and he HADN'T done anything wrong). However, Job survived. And you will too. God NEVER tempts us, but he WILL test us. He won't test you beyond your abilities, and I always say "there must be someone in my future who I will be able to 'minister to' (in church terms, but truth is , just talk to and help through) in this area since I am now experiencing it. For example this happened to me with my miscarriage, maybe some day I'll write details on that, but for now, let's just say, that it became very clear to me shortly afterward what a servant I was of God to have gone through that, JUST to help someone else in their same circumstance. Before that, I completely could not relate to women who had difficulty in getting pregnant (I wasn't rude, I'd nod my head and try to be helpful, but I honestly couldn't relate-my first pregnancy had happened super quickly and I just hadn't experienced that part of life). Afterwards though, I now had experience to relate to them and therefore be helpful to them. And in my case, it wasn't as much as what I said to THEM when they were going through it, as it was HOW I walked when I was going through it. So all this to say, you may be being groomed for something in the future that will allow you to help someone else become stronger in their walk with God. And isn't that the whole point anyway? God wants us all to come to Him, so if we have to bear something that enables us to bring someone to God, don't you think its worth it? I do.

I hope this has helped. Obviously its long (and now I'm late-ha ha-oh well) but hopefully it may open the doors for you (and others reading this) to dig deeper into one of those 'avenues' to try to find YOUR answer that God has for You. Love you! So does He!

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