“And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.” (1 John 2:17)
Abide forever means live forever, but it means more. It means those who do the will of God will stand forever, will remain forever, will live in God forever, will endure forever, will be strong forever. Those who do the will of God are sustained by His absolute eternal staying power to remain alive and active on the scenes of eternity and all that’s on the horizon of forever.
When you build, first you must build the foundation.
When you plant, first you must prepare the soil.
When you travel, first you must secure a vehicle of travel.
There have been many in the kingdom who plant and water seed, but do little to prepare the soil. Therefore, they suffer loss of a harvest or significant diminishment of a harvest.
If you have what you need for the day, you have what you need. Be careful not to get caught up in the trap of “never enough” Do not say I need more. Instead, be faithful with what you have been given, and you will be given more.
Throughout time, if the farmer needed a greater harvest of corn, he saved out more seed corn and sowed the corn as seed. Those who fall into the trap of saying they do not have enough, usually spend their time consuming their seed corn and asking for more; and thus, sowing less. There is nothing wrong with asking for more. But we are instructed to cooperate with God in our obedience and sowing.
Have you ever wondered why life began in a garden? Everything that God does is full of life and growth. A garden is the perfect picture for God to show us the blessing of fruitfulness He desires for us. Even though our bodies stop growing and gradually begin to wear out, our inner being is renewed every single day (2 Corinthians 4:16). As pastors and leaders caring for others, we often forget to tend the soil of our own heart. Jesus taught us, “A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” (Luke 6:45) And Proverbs 4:23 says, “Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life.” We must tend to our own heart soil to keep it fertile and fruitful for feeding others in the Kingdom.
John 8:47 (NKJV): “He who is of God hears God’s words; therefore you do not hear, because you are not of God.”
It is fascinating to study Jesus’ words here. He gives a condition for those who are of God. If we are of God, it is demonstrated in our lives by our hearing of His words. One would expect Him to follow that with “therefore you are not of God because you do not hear His words.” Instead, He says it the other way around, “therefore you do not hear because you are not of God.”
In this life, all of our actions are recorded. Like witnesses in the courtroom, our lives, our works, and our motives are being examined and cross-examined by life’s circumstances, which are governed and permitted by Heaven’s wisdom and divine government. Our actions in all of these circumstances emit precise testimonies of our deeds, which testify to our heart condition and our allegiance or the lack thereof, toward God and His monarchy. Like a court stenographer, everything is being recorded. In the days of judgement after this age, the stenographers’ books will be opened so that a verdict can be issued for all people, small and great, believing and unbelieving. (Rev. 20:11-15, 2 Cor. 5:9-11, Rev. 22:12-15, I Thes. 2:19-20)