Birthing the New
We have been given a wonderful promise in the book of Isaiah that the Lord will surely deliver that which He has brought to birth. “Shall I bring to the time of birth, and not cause delivery?” says the Lord. “Shall I who cause delivery shut up the womb?” says your God (Isaiah 66:9).
There have been many words about the “new” that we, as the Body of Christ, are now transitioning into. As we have become pregnant with these promises we must not attempt to solely define where we are going by where we have been or by what we have seen in times past.
The birthing of any new thing in God is much like the birthing of a child. You can have a basic idea of some of the qualities and characteristics that the child will carry by looking at its birth parents and in part its previous siblings, but the truth of the matter is that child is going to be unique and very different from those who have preceded him or her.
A Father’s Heart
My wife and I have three wonderful boys who are entirely different from one another and each has their own unique combination of the qualities and characteristics we possess. At the same time, their personalities, giftings and the presence they carry preserve their individuality within the larger family context.
My oldest son, Joshua, is very “type A” and as he would tell you “is a creative genius”. His younger brother Caleb is a bit more of a free spirit and Samuel is the freest of the bunch! Their individuality is not only what makes them special, but also what makes our family so unique.
We as parents must relate to each one in a way that allows them both the freedom and guidelines to become the full and true expression of who the Lord created them to be. To do otherwise would not only rob them of what they were created to carry, but it would also be a disservice to the world that they are called to impact.
The same is true for moves of God. We must not relate to them the way we have related to past moves. If we do, we will stunt their God-appointed development and crush the seed of destiny they carry.
Beholding the New Thing
I have had the privilege in times past to be a part of several extended moves of God that thankfully flourished and were a blessing to many. I have also seen moves of God that were cut short and ended prematurely.
In my personal estimation, the number one killer of something new and fresh that the Lord is releasing is when people attempt to measure and define the “new thing” based on the revivals and outpourings of the past setting premature guidelines and restrictions of how things will and will not be. As we enter into this new season and behold the new thing that God is doing, let us allow it to be just that – the “new thing.”
“Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them (Isaiah 42:9).
As Paul articulated in his letter to the Corinthians, we become what we behold (see 2 Corinthians 3:16-18). It is in this time of “beholding” that we continue in our “becoming” the sons of God that the earth is earnestly expecting to arise and shine turning many to righteousness in this hour (see Romans 8:14&19-22, Isaiah 60:1, Daniel 12:3).
One of my greatest joys as a father waiting on the birth of each of my boys was in seeking the Lord for their name and its prophetic application to their personal calling and destiny. Every time I call them by name I am speaking into them the destiny that has been reserved for them in God’s heart since the beginning of time.
As a father, they do not simply belong to me but as a steward of what God has entrusted to me in them, it is my job to serve Him faithfully and do my best to represent Him to them. In preparation for what’s coming it would behoove us to do the same as we look to the Lord devoid of our filters and opinions of how we think things should be to hear how He says they will be.
Do not remember the former things, nor consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing, NOW it shall spring forth (Isaiah 43:18-19a).
Calling It As He Sees It
There is phrase that has been echoed throughout humanity that has kept many souls in the prison of an earthly reality when we are called to live as ambassadors of another realm (see 2 Corinthians 5:20 and Philippians 3:20). In every situation we encounter we are given a choice. We can “call it as we see it” or we can choose to “call it as He sees it.”
Before we can call it as He sees it, we have to actually see it as He sees it. Ezekiel understood this when the Spirit of God brought Him into a valley of dry bones and asked, “Son of man, can these bones live?”
Ezekiel knew that there was no life in what he currently saw. So, he answered, “O Lord God, You know (see Ezekiel 37:2-3).” Ezekiel needed to exchange what he saw for what God saw, so as the prophetic voice of his day He could speak as God would speak.
The Father Loves the Son
So, how can we see what God sees? How can we see people, circumstances, businesses, governments, churches, cities and nations resurrected in such a way as to represent heaven on earth? Let’s look at the words of Jesus in John 5:20.
“For the Father loves the Son, and shows Him all things that He Himself does; and He will show Him greater works than these, that you may marvel.”
True Fathers love to live life with their sons. Their greatest desire is to pass on the wisdom, insight and understanding that their life experiences have afforded them. In this, sons learn how to live, act, govern and take responsibility as they learn how to rightly steward what they carry through name and association.
The same is true for us. Seeing how God sees, starts with how you perceive God sees you. Jesus saw by love, in love, through love and for love. The room He made in His heart for His Father’s love for Him is what enlightened the eyes of His understanding to see in the way His Father saw.
Jesus gave us an incredible key in this passage. Even before He would give the invitation to do what He did and greater works, He gave us the key that would open that door to “greater works”. “The Father loves the Son…” Everything we do in the Kingdom comes from this place.
Learning To Live As Sons
As we mature from walking as children in need of milk to growing up in all things into Christ, we become sons (see Ephesians 4:13-16). It is in this stage of our development that our heavenly Father grants to us our part in the family business.
You can often tell whether someone is a maturing son of the Kingdom by listening to how they speak and treat others. Children can be quite shortsighted. It is all about the now, the temporal.
Sons are living for something bigger and longer lasting – something eternal. The words that we speak are the fruit born out of the seeds that we have allowed to take root in our heart. When we begin to live as sons it will be evident because of the realities released when we speak.
Jesus said, “For out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks (see Matthew 12:34).” I have heard it said that by looking at one’s words you can clearly see the abundance of the reality that they carry in their heart.
So, what makes up the abundance of the heart? Think of your heart as a bank account. The things you give your focus to determine what is deposited into your account. The conversations you listen to, the things you look at, and the books you read – all of these become deposits placed into your heart. Your words are the method by which you withdraw.
Jesus said, “Where your treasure is, there your heart will be also (see Matthew 6:21).” The word, “treasure” can also be translated as a deposit or an investment. We can also understand this verse to mean, “the investments we make based on the resources we have been given reveal the balance within our heart.”
Jesus described the words that He spoke as “spirit and life (see John 6:63).” Jesus’ words were an investment into others revealing the heart of His Father to them. When He opened His mouth, word shaped containers of God’s grace would bring heaven to earth in the hearts of the hungry that heard Him. They still do today.
The Evidence of Things Not Seen
Recently the Lord spoke to me about the importance of redefining our faith as we transition into this new season. When I heard this I knew that He was not speaking to me in terms of the redefining of our faith in terms of doctrine as the Scriptures are both our source and standard in that regard.
This admonition is in terms of the application and appropriation of our faith in the realm of that which is naturally unseen. We must begin to live from this realm as we seek to establish the Lord’s heavenly blueprint for this new season.
Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible (Hebrews 11:1 and 3 Author Emphasis).
Much of what we have believed for and even in some cases are believing for now has been born out of what either “has been” or had been perceived as successful and “kingdom” in times past. According to the Apostle Paul, the Lord has prepared something much greater and far deeper for those who love Him.
“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, nor have entered into the heart of man the things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God (1 Corinthians 2:9-10).
Faith is the hand that we have been given to reach into a place called hope and pull the promises of tomorrow into today. When writing to the Romans Paul said, “hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance (Romans 8:24-25).
Faith is a substance and faith is evidence. In a court of law when a witness is called to take the stand they are asked for the testimony of what they have seen and heard that supports the evidence that is currently being presented in that case.
One of the most common objections in a court of law is what is called hearsay. Hearsay is a prior statement made by a third party who is not present in the courtroom at the time the statement is offered as evidence. For the most part, a witness is not allowed to testify about what someone else who is not in the courtroom said in times past. The reason why hearsay testimonies are inadmissible is because without seeing and hearing for oneself, the witness lacks the authority necessary for their testimony to be considered as evidence.
We must transition from second hand revelation into a place of personal visitation. It is in this place that like the Apostles of the first century church we become fully empowered witnesses entrusted with tangible evidence that supports the testimony of what we have seen and heard (see Acts 4:20 and 1 John 1:1-4).
Not By Might, Nor By Power
What is now beginning to unfold cannot and will not be accomplished by the wisdom of man nor the natural strength that we can muster in and of ourselves. As the word of the Lord came to Zerubbabel during a time of great discouragement, distraction and delay in the rebuilding of the temple, I believe the Lord is saying to us now:
“Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit,” says the Lord of hosts. (Zechariah 4:6)
However, with this promise and admonition, Zerubbabel was not instructed to sit back, watch and wait for God to accomplish the assignment that had been entrusted to him. Along with his assignment, Zerubbabel was also given the responsibility as a master builder and God’s fellow worker to partner with the promise by the Spirit of Faith and the spoken word (see 1 Corinthians 3:9-11, 2 Corinthians 4:13 and Job 22:28).
‘Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain! And he shall bring forth the capstone with shouts of “Grace, grace to it!”’ Moreover the word of the Lord came to me, saying: “The hands of Zerubbabel have laid the foundation of this temple; his hands shall also finish it. Then you will know that the Lord of hosts has sent Me to you (Zechariah 4:7-9).
As you are reading this, the Lord may be highlighting to you some assignments that you have been given in times past where the opposition became too great and as a result there has been delay. It is in this place, we often look to hand the baton of our assignment off to the Lord for Him to finish what we have started in obedience to His leading.
However, I would offer that it is in this leg of the race that the Lord is not looking for a relay type of handoff but rather a three legged joining together of our will and His leading. As we enter into this place of union with His divine strategy and timing we are not only endued with a divine enablement but the heavenly pattern that we are called to follow also becomes clear and evident to all.
Moses ascended Mount Sinai, stepped into the cloud of God’s glory and was shown the pattern of the tabernacle that he was to build on earth. In the same way, we must begin to access and utilize the relational and revelatory keys of the Kingdom to begin to see, hear and perceive that which has already been loosed in heaven that we could loose it on earth by the Spirit of Faith and the power of the Spoken Word (see Matthew 16:16-19 NASB).
When Jesus taught us to pray, “Your Kingdom come, your will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven”, He was modeling for us that what is to be built here on the earth already exists in heaven. With this understanding, our responsibility and privilege is to agree on earth with what has been established in heaven creating a place for the heavenly pattern to rest in us and be set up in our midst.