Psalm 145:16-18 (NLT)
When you open your hand, you satisfy the hunger and thirst of every living thing. The Lord is righteous in everything he does; He is filled with kindness. The Lord is close to all who call on him, yes, to all who call on him in truth.
When our daughter accepted the proposal of her best friend and sweetheart, we were happy and elated as any parents would be when their child finds the love of their life and the one who God made for them. It was a bright spot shining behind the clouds surrounding the storm in our life. She has been a joy and a blessing since the moment she arrived. Over the past few years, as I have been in and out of our home taking care of our son through many appointments of chemotherapy, radiation and every other conceivable treatment to win this war against this wretched invader, our daughter has kept things running in my absence. After the excitement waned a bit, the flurry of planning began. My husband poured over articles of the cost of weddings nowadays and about had a heart attack. Did you know that the average cost of a wedding in the United States is $25,200? Finally, it was time for him to “pop” the question, “What is the wedding budget?” I laughed. To me a budget would imply money to be allocated for something. For example, I have a monthly grocery budget but this was something different entirely. Our economic budget had been hit pretty hard for caring for our son. This proposed wedding would require a whole lot of faith and favor which is God’s Economy.
The Lord is filled with kindness. God is love and longs to give us good things that He planned for us before we even knew Him. Over the past few months as the wedding plans and purchases have been in full swing, I have watched the Lord take little and make much out of it. His Special Favor is more than evident in our life as random and unexpected blessings keep finding us along the way. At first it was every now and then, but now it just seems to keep happening so much so that it has been in the forefront of my mind. Could it be that God’s Favor is with us always but we insist on paying our own way through this life?
Psalm 30:5 (NLT)
For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime! Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.
His Favor lasts for a lifetime. That is a coincidence because I am living a life so if this is true than God’s Favor is constantly being poured out to me. Favor is something done or granted out of goodwill. The state of being approved which describes righteousness. It is excessive kindness the kind that exceeds that which we might even think to ask for. It is unfair partiality. This is how God feels about you and me today. He desires to give us good things if we would only be willing to receive. Why do we struggle so with dependency on God? Trust issues, of course, limit our ability to take what the Lord freely offers this is why faith is required. With earthly expectations, we come to the Lord seeking earthly things. Many times it’s a financial blessing to meet our need. But what if the Lord wants to ease our burden by taking that obligation out of our life to give us something better. I have friends who have gone through foreclosures but found peace in their new rental house who are paying less for a nicer place. God’s Favor is based on His Expectations and Ordinations in for our life. It is according to His Plan which is far better than anything that we could ever come up with. But if we cannot trust Him through the long night of weeping, we miss the joy that comes in the morning.
Proverbs 3:1-6 (NLT)
My child, never forget the things I have taught you. Store my commands in your heart. If you do this, you will live many years, and your life will be satisfying. Never let loyalty and kindness leave you! Tie them around your neck as a reminder. Write them deep within your heart. Then you will find favor with both God and people, and you will earn a good reputation. Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.
Proverbs 3 paints a pathway to God’s Favor. Trust the Lord with all your heart leaning not on our human understanding and He will show us where to find His Favor. Going through this life expecting God to do what we want Him to do will limit one’s ability to live in His Favor. It is when we say not my will but Your Will God that we live in the midst of His Glory and overwhelming favor. The Lord knows what will truly satisfy our soul. He knows exactly what we need to live in peace. Everything is mapped out according to His Plan but we like things our way. We want it to be convenient, comfortable and easy. Finding the Favor of God and living in it is a commitment to seek His Will in ALL you do.
The popular song “Oceans” beckons to the Lord saying, “Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders, let me walk upon the waters, wherever You would call me. Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander and my faith will be made stronger in the Presence of my Savior.” I recently read an article titled, “Stop Singing Oceans”. The author warned people of the ramifications of such an endeavor. They were invited God to change their whole life, shake them out of their comfort zone and do something crazy. It’s like when people telling you not to pray for patience. We learn patience by waiting. To find God’s Favor means trusting God with our life – the more we give Him the more we experience His Favor.
I Timothy 6:6-10 (NLT)
Yet true godliness with contentment is itself great wealth. After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it. So if we have enough food and clothing, let us be content. But people who long to be rich fall into temptation and are trapped by many foolish and harmful desires that plunge them into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.
God’s Favor for us is not money. It will never be financial. Money is man’s economy. Now I am not saying that God wants all His People to be broke all of the time but there are very few believers who have healthy relationships financially. Before you say, I don’t have a relationship with my money. What would be your response if someone took it from you? Many years ago, thieves broke into our house and stole valuable electronics, money and some other items. We have homeowner’s insurance that replaced everything that was taken from us. But the one thing that they could not reestablish was our security. It took a long time to get over the feeling of being violated and invaded in such a way. Money cannot satisfy our soul but God’s Favor can. Many people struggle to love God more than money hence the fact that less than 10% of the church actually tithe returning just one-tenth to the Lord for His Use. If money is of no use beyond this world, it has no eternal value. The only thing of forever worth is faith, hope and love. The blessing of the Lord should not give us any sorrow so why do we lie in bed at night worrying about bills and such? Worry adds not a single moment to our life only taking precious time away. God knows exactly what we need now and forever. Money is not that thing. Out of His Rich Abundance, He promises to supply everything we need. It is His Will to do so. We must be willing to give up our will to have His Will.
You cannot buy God’s Love. You cannot do anything to add to your own righteousness. It is God’s Favor that gave you such an amazing gift as our salvation. Pride always wants to pay its own way so it can be its own person. This is not the agreement made when we gave our life to Jesus Christ. All of me for all of You! To live in God’s Favor requires humility.
I John 2:15-17 (NLT)
Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever.
Anyone who does what pleases God will live forever. Favor is forever. We will never find God’s Favor our way but must learn to walk through His Way. As we continue to yield more and more of our life’s capacity to His Will and His Word, we begin to walk His Way. It is in this place that we find His Favor even in the smallest things. I am a giver. I struggle in receiving. It took three years for the Lord to change my heart and mind to be able to receive. Paying my bills, working hard at my job, and being a good steward of all that He has given us is a good example. However, it does not impress God. Loving the Father means being open to receiving His Favor no matter how He has packaged it willingly. You don’t have to beg to receive. But you do have to accept the gift from the giver. What do you need today? What would make your life easier? Pray about that thing. Tell the Lord what you need but refrain from telling Him how to do it and see what happens as your expectation changes to align with His Will. Blessings will begin to pop up in the least likely places. Make the cry of your heart for God’s Spirit to indeed lead you where your trust is without borders and He will but make sure it is a place that you are willing to go no matter what the natural cost to have His Special Favor!
Joyful are those who listen to me, watching for me daily at my gates, waiting for me outside my home! For whoever finds me finds life and receives favor from the Lord.