Thursday, 17 January 2013

Don't Take Grace for Granted.

"And Saul armed David with his armour, and he put an helmet of brass upon his head; also he armed him with a coat of mail. And David girded his sword upon his armour, and he assayed to go; for he had not proved it. And David said unto Saul, I cannot go with these; for I have not proved them. And David put them off him"- I Samuel 17: 38-39.

One scripture we have often misquoted or, at best, quoted out of context is Philipians 4:13 "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me." I don't intend to take anything away from it, but truth is, you cannot do what you have not learn to do. No matter how often you quote and claim this scripture even with a faith as high as mountain Everest, you cannot fly an aeroplane if you are not a pilot. Neither can you operate on a patient if you are not a surgeon no matter how anointed you are. These are basic facts of life, we don't pray them into being. We learn and master them! The good new is that, going by that same scripture, we can learn to do whatever we desire to learn. Failure to learn, breeds mediocrity even in the Church. When you expect "grace" to do for you what you should do for yourself, you set yourself up for mediocrity or outright failure. That's taking grace for granted. Please, don't! Don't get me wrong, anointing, prayers, faith and grace have their places, but there is also the place of learning, mastery and development of whether a skill, a profession, a trade or a talent. The Church is littered with folks who have refused to sit down and learn before embarking on the voyage of destiny/ministry. This is has not been the practice in Bible days, even The Lord Jesus spent years preparing for a 3 1/2-year ministry.

In our opening text, we read about what transpired at the battle front. David said, "I cannot go with these; for I have not proved them". In other words, he was like saying "I've not used them before, I'm not skilled in their usage, therefore I don't know how effective they are". "Let me use what I've mastered over time while I trust God for victory", I imagine him saying. We know the outcome of it- a resounding victory. Pls don't tell me that God directed the stone to Goliath's forehead. While this MAY be the case, I believe David's mastery of the use of slings played no small rule. David understood that no man learns to use a weapon at the battle front. The best time to do that is in training. When Abraham set out to rescue Lot, the Bible said he armed  his TRAINED servant, three hundred and eighteen of them (Genesis 14:14). When you arm a man who has not been trained, you set him up for failure. Whether you arm him with position, money, people, or opportunity, if he is not prepared or trained, forget it! No wonder Paul cautioned about ordaining novices as Bishops in the Church. The rod with which Moses lead the Israelites (and parted the Red Sea) was not picked up by the road side, rather it has been his rod right form his days in exile. He however, surrendered it to the Lord, and it was later referred to as "the rod of God". That's what happened when we yield our ability (skills, talents etc) to God. They become HIS and you can imagine what happens when God takes over our abilities, skills, talents etc. Under such arrangement, you can expect the Holy Ghost to teach you things never before known by man. You can expect HIM to amplify the effect; that was how a David could kill a Goliath with a sling. 

In Matthew 25:15 on the parable of the talents, the Bible said, the lord of the servants gave talents "to every man according to his several ability". It was not their lord's responsibility to develop or use these talents for them even though he was the one who employed them for the task. That's my point! What are those deposits of grace (gifts, talents) in you begging for development. God won't develop them for you, that's your responsibility. There are challenges and opportunities lurking in the corner, they don't need your permission to present themselves. And when they present themselves, what you make of them is a function of your level of preparedness. How many times have we messed up opportunities simply because we were not prepared for them?May this not be the case with us this year in Jesus' name! Amen!!

What assignment has God given you, what task has He called you to do? Develop and master the use of that "rod" or "sling" in your hand. Go for the necessary training. Failure to do this will not be an excuse at the end of the day if you failed in this assignment or task. What have you set as goals this year for which you are currently fasting and praying, believing God for? Whatever you are asking for will not drop from the skies, they more often come as opportunities. But are you prepared for them? Are you a student? Study as if it all depends on studying. Don't take grace for granted, God is not a magician! Are you in ministry, in business, or a career person? Don't be a jack of all trade and master of none. Let people know you for your expertise and skills. When you do your part, coupled with the grace and anointing of God not even satan can stop you. #Selah!

Thank you for your time!

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