Remember these things as you reach out to people. (Click “Source” for all)
- Paul’s longing for people’s prosperity was Jesus’ longing.
“God knows how much I love you and long for you with the tender compassion of Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 1:8, NLT)
Jesus’ longing has begun us. Let’s let him work in the longing then we can work it out instead of trying to work it up.
- Paul longed for people he’d never seen.
“I want you to know how much I have agonized for you and for the church at Laodicea, and for many other believers who have never met me personally. I want them to be encouraged and knit together by strong ties of love. I want them to have complete confidence that they understand God’s mysterious plan, which is Christ himself.” (Colossians 2:1–2, NLT)
It’s okay to long for and encourage others through the internet and other remote means. Paul did this with written letters.
- Paul longed for strategic plans, but things looked chaotic.
“Next Paul and Silas traveled through the area of Phrygia and Galatia because the Holy Spirit had prevented them from preaching the word in the province of Asia at that time. Then coming to the borders of Mysia, they headed north for the province of Bithynia, but again the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them to go there. So instead, they went on through Mysia to the seaport of Troas. That night Paul had a vision: A man from Macedonia in northern Greece was standing there, pleading with him, “Come over to Macedonia and help us!” So we decided to leave for Macedonia at once, having concluded that God was calling us to preach the Good News there.” (Acts 16:6–10, NLT)
Paul planned. God ordered. Let’s dream and plan and let God order and adjust. Let’s not wait for perfection. Let activate. The direction will appear through the Holy Spirit.
“We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps.” (Proverbs 16:9, NLT)
“The wind blows wherever it wants. Just as you can hear the wind but can’t tell where it comes from or where it is going, so you can’t explain how people are born of the Spirit.” (John 3:8, NLT)
Thoughts? Please sign in and comment below.
I love this “Paul planned. God ordered. Let’s dream and plan and let God order and adjust. Let’s not wait for perfection. Let activate. The direction will appear through the Holy Spirit.” Amen!
Thank you, Mina. Paul’s willingness to go to different areas encourages me to try things too.
Job 36:11 promises, “Those who obey and fear of the Lord will spend their days in prosperity and their years and pleasure.” OUr relationship with the Lord builds into our day-to-day well-being.
I love the other verse that says the Lord has prepared works for us to do in advance. (Ephesians 2:10) I don’t even think we have to know what those works are; we just do well to believe the word that says such works are happening through us—and then rejoice!
I’m living out that promise in Ephesians 2:10 in my ministry with the ladies right now and it’s wonderful!! God prepared and planned this for me and I couldn’t have planned it better for myself 👍🏻
Yay, Kristina! “My God will supply all your chreía = usefulness, employment.” (Philippians 4:19) Keep on giv’n’m heaven!
We can have our own contrived longings or we can have longings that flow from the heart of God. Often we think our longings are longings from the heart of God when they are not.
There is no question, God has “appointed a day” and given us assignments from his longing. We must “today, hear his voice… and not harden our hearts.
Since therefore it remains for some to enter it (“it” being “rest”, but not nap time) ,
and those who formerly received the good news failed to enter because of disobedience,
again he appoints a certain day,
“Today,” saying through David so long afterward, in the words already quoted,
“Today, if you hear his voice,
do not harden your hearts.”
We have a partnership to work out with God “today”, which is one day at a time.
We have a partnership to “hear his voice”, and not mistake our own for his.
We have a partnership to “not harden our hearts”. Our flesh is a ruthless heart hardener.
God is patient with us, knowing we our flesh heart hardener.
And He fulfills those longings that He has put there in me …longings I had from a child but I didn’t know then that they were from Him. But now I know. And now I am experiencing them fufilled and it’s so rewarding and satisfying. It’s the best!!
Thank you, Tim! Amen to listening daily!
It helps me when my fleshly heart-hardener is kicking in, to know that the Lord-YHWH-I AM is my Shepherd and is right here restoring this crazy wayward soul of mine (Ps.23:1-3).
He is so active in us that when we stray we get miserable because God’s holy seed embedded in us and compels us to repent—thus, we cannot continue in sin (1 John 3:18) What a relief! Great freedom-making misery! We Groan (Romans 8:23). Yay!
And I think I can understand Paul’s longing for others. I long for the women in the recovery home to know the depths of Christ’s love for them, how worthy and precious they are to Him and in His eyes, and the amazing plans He has for them and for their families. And I feel that for each one who walks through the door even before I know them or if I ever get to know them well. And for those that will walk through that door someday. It’s my people group… He called me to this and to them… Just like He called Paul to the Gentiles …God put the longing for them there in my heart beforehand. 💗😊
I like “…it’s my people group”! Thank you, Lord!
I believe we are divinely made in the image of God, so yes make Godly plans and the Lord will so you the way he want you to put your plan into action. Sorry no scripture address just what I believe I’ll let all you scholars find those.
This is great without an official scripture! Thank you, Dick!
So true, John! That’s a great collection of passages.
“Paul longed for strategic plans, but things looked chaotic.”
And over here in the Middle East, that’s so often exactly our situation, ROFL!! But that’s also the walk of faith. As this awesome word from the Father’s Heart ministry says:
The Father says today,
“My kingdom is voice-activated and motion-activated.
“Waiting and watching for something to change without engaging your faith is not productive, My beloved. My plans and purposes for your life in no way exclude the vital need for action on your part. Be willing to take risks. That is what faith looks like to the natural mind. Be willing to walk on water, to wrestle with the angel, to stare the lion in the teeth, and to dare My word to *not* be faithful where you are concerned!
“Don’t look at the failures of the past or the attempts of others who haven’t experienced progress. Just say within your heart, “Fear not! Believe only!” —then pull the ripcord, and cast yourself on the mercies of My providence, that are working to [make you an overcomer] in life!
“This is all about “free fall to the Father!” You won’t crash and burn when your trust is in Me and you refuse to be deterred. . . . Stay in the “Love Lane” and the “Faith Posture,” and [you and I] will walk it out together, says the Father, until highest heart’s desire and greatest dream fulfilled are yours in radical measure.” http://fathersheartministry.net/the-father-says-today-july-24th-2019/
I love it! 😀
Amen, J.P., to pulling ripcords!
Right after this, I’ll pull today’s ripcord and work on Lesson 2. of my unfinished and unpublished online class: Business Writing and Emails made Simple and Strong! One next faith-step for John. Prayers, please! You’ve inspired me to jump!—Aaaaaaah!